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The Foundation laid out their reasoning with a post on X they shared on Tuesday.
“The National Book Award 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 In light of the announcement that ‘The Drew Barrymore Show’ will resume production, the National Book Foundation has rescinded Ms.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. 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,” the post said.
An update on the host of the 2023 National Book Awards. pic.twitter.com/aa5aLh0FIU
— National Book Foundation (@nationalbook) September 12, 2023
This announcement was made after “The Drew Barrymore Show” attracted crowds of picketers outside CBS Studios on Monday. The 48-year-old celebrity justified her decision to resume filming by saying that the talk show would not use WGA writers and would therefore be in compliance with WGA and SAG-AFTRA rules. In May, Barrymore stepped down as host of the MTV Movie & TV Awards to show solidarity with the Writers Guild.
“I made a choice to walk away from the MTV, film and television awards because I was the host and it had a direct conflict with what the strike was dealing with which was studios, streamers, film, and television. It was also in the first week of the strike and so I did what I thought was the appropriate thing at the time to stand in solidarity with the writers,” Barrymore wrote on Instagram Sunday.
The actress noted how her talk show went on summer hiatus on April 20 before the WGA strike began, so they never had to shut down.
“However, I am also making the choice to come back for the first time in this strike for our show, that may have my name on it but this is bigger than just me,” she went on. “I own this choice. We are in compliance with not discussing or promoting film and television that is struck of any kind.”
One of the writers from “The Drew Barrymore Show” showed up on the picket line Monday.
“I think in general, this is obviously bigger than us three writers on ‘The Drew Barrymore Show.’ It is a bummer to hear that the show is going back because it sends a message that union writers are not valuable,” writer Chelsea White told The Hollywood Reporter. “And it goes directly against what the WGA, SAG-AFTRA, all the unions are trying to band together to stand up against the greedy studios.”