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Drew Barrymore Will No Longer Host National Book Awards Following Talk Show Controversy

The National Book awards has rescinded Drew Barrymore’s invitation to host its upcoming annual award ceremony in the wake the return of her talk show “The Drew Barrymore Show” this fall amid Hollywood strikes.

In a statement to social media, the National Book Foundation wrote “The National Book Awards is an evening dedicated to celebrating the power of literature, and the incomparable contributions of writers to our culture. In light of the announcement that ‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ will resume production, the National Book Foundation has rescinded Ms. Barrymore’s invitation to host the 74th National Book Awards Ceremony.”

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The foundation added, “Our commitment is to ensure that the focus of the Awards remains on celebrating writers and books, and we are grateful to Ms. Barrymore and her team for their understanding in this situation.”

Barrymore was initially announced as host of the Nov. 15 event in late July. Now, just days after some protested her decision to bring back her talk show on Sept. 18, the foundation has revoked its decision, with no replacement host announced.

While picketers expressed anger toward Barrymore, SAG-AFTRA issued a statement ensuring that the talk show’s return did not constitute scabbing: “‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ is produced under the Network Television Code which is a separate contract and is not struck. It is permissible work and Drew’s role as host does not violate the current strike rules.”

Attendees of the show’s taping claim that the crew kicked them out on Monday due to their support of the strike. A spokesman from “The Drew Barrymore show” addressed this claim in a statement to Variety, saying, “It is our policy to welcome everyone to our show tapings,” the spokesperson said. “Due to heightened security concerns today, we regret that two audience members were not permitted to attend or were not allowed access. Drew was completely unaware of the incident and we are in the process of reaching out to the affected audience members to offer them new tickets.”

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