Tom Hanks to host televised Biden-Harris inauguration event

Tom Hanks will host the inauguration event, scheduled to air at 8:30 p.m. EDT on January 20. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/ca4b4a47984c95f61ff191272a7463ab/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
Tom Hanks will host the inauguration event, scheduled to air at 8:30 p.m. EDT on January 20. File Photo by Jim Ruymen/UPI | License Photo

Jan. 13 (UPI) -- In lieu of more traditional inaugural events this year, President-elect Joe Biden's team said Wednesday it will air a televised special hosted by actor Tom Hanks and featuring performances by Demi Lovato and Jon Bon Jovi.

The program, "Celebrating America," will begin at 8:30 p.m. EST on January 20 and will be shown on a variety of networks and platforms, including ABC, CBS, CNN, NBC, MSNBC, YouTube, Facebook, Twitter, Twitch, Amazon Prime Video, Microsoft Bing, NewsNow by Fox, AT&T DIRECTV and U-verse.


The 90-minute event will include remarks from Biden and Vice President-elect Kamala Harris. In addition to Lovato and Bon Jovi, Ant Clemons and Justin Timberlake will perform.

"This inauguration presents a unique opportunity to spotlight the resilience and spirit of an America united," said Tony Allen, CEO of the Presidential Inaugural Committee.

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"Our first priority is safety -- so while many of us will be watching safely from our homes, we are creating real moments of connection that highlight a new inclusive American era of leadership that works for and represents all Americans."


Biden's inaugural team last month urged Americans not to travel to Washington, D.C., to attend the oath of office on the U.S. Capitol steps because of the spread of COVID-19.

Risks associated with attending the event have grown after last week's deadly riot at the Capitol building by President Donald Trump's supporters trying to overturn the results of the election. The U.S. National Guard will deploy 15,000 armed troops in Washington, D.C., during the inauguration events.

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"Groups involved in the Jan. 6, 2021, riots at the U.S. Capitol continue to threaten to disrupt the 59th presidential inauguration," Jeffrey P. Reinbold, superintendent of the National Mall and memorial parks, said in a statement Monday. "This includes the setup and execution of inaugural events, which occur in several park areas."

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Capitol Hill police salute the passing of the funeral hearse on Sunday for slain Officer Brian Sicknick, who died in the rioting at the U.S. Capitol on Wednesday. Photo by Mike Theiler/UPI | License Photo

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