Sure, the MTV Movie Awards are this Sunday, but it’s not the only game in town: Over on HBO, the competition will be a brand-new episode of Game of Thrones. So how does host Conan O’Brien plan on combating the swords-and-sandals series? With both skin and spoilers, naturally.
“I’d like people to really see a lot of my body for the first time,” O’Brien tells EW of his plans as host. “What’s interesting is that the world has changed so much since when I first got into television; you have to be increasingly fearless. So, I want people to see parts of my body that no one should see.
“I’ve also gotten a hold of the Game of Thrones episode that’s on that night,” O’Brien continues. “So on the day before the awards, I’m going to get out as many spoilers as possible to kill the Game of Thrones experience for people. Then, out of either despair or rage, they’ll have to tune in to see the MTV Movie Awards.”
And considering that he doesn’t even care about ruining his chances to score a coveted GoT cameo, he’s especially dangerous. “I’ve tried to get one of those,” he says. “They’ve now offered me the part of the body double for the guy whose penis has been cut off – which I found really insulting.”
What else should viewers look forward to from Coco’s first MTV hosting gig (other than ditching his longtime sidekick Andy Richter)? Apparently not his famous string dance. ”At my show I have a chicken-wire barrier that separates me from the angry audience so that they can’t physically get to me to kill me when I’m doing the string dance,” he explains. “But I think if I started doing the string dance in front of that MTV crowd, there would be a riot. I’ve been asked by security not to, in fact. They said, ‘We cannot guarantee your safety at the Nokia Theatre when it’s filled with teenagers and movie executives.’”
Of course, there will still be jokes aplenty. O’Brien, who hosted the Emmys back in 2002 and 2003, points at the celebrated duo of Tina Fey and Amy Poehler as recent quality examples: “Tina and Amy were hilarious. They’re, like, perfect. And they have great jokes – nothing beats good jokes. And they show up, which is important. That’s the most important criteria.”
Despite all his preparation, though, he emphasizes that he has no control over the show’s results. “I’m not even allowed to vote. In fact, I’m not allowed to vote in the presidential election either. I had some trouble in the… let’s just say the late ’80s. I had a brush with the law, so I’m not allowed to vote for anything. And I wear an ankle bracelet.
“I don’t even know what the voting process is,” he adds. “I’ve asked how the voting works, and they’ve said, ‘It’s none of your business, it’s none of your concern.’ All the kinds of things the Mafia says when you ask them what they’re keeping in the back of the store. ‘Ay, don’t worry about it. Take a walk!’”
The MTV Movie Awards air Sunday at 9 p.m. ET on MTV.