In the first ceremony following the scandal that rocked the industry, stars arrived at the red carpet leading to the Dolby Theatre wearing pins for the Time’s Up movement, that was triggered by the mogul’s downfall.
Opening the show, Kimmel said: “The Academy, as you are no doubt aware, took action last year to expel Harvey Weinstein from their ranks.
“There were a lot of great nominees but Harvey deserved it the most.
“The Academy kicked him out and after they did I was curious so I looked it up, the only other person to be expelled was a character actor called Carmine Caridi, in 2004, who was kicked out for sharing screeners.
“Carmine Caridi got the same punishment as Harvey Weinstein for giving his neighbour a copy of Seabiscuit on VHS.
“What happened with Harvey and what is happening all over was long overdue.
“We can’t let bad behaviour slide anymore, the world is watching us and we need to set an example and the truth is if we are successful and if we can work together to stop sexual harassment in the workplace, if we can do that, women will only have to deal with harassment all the time at every other place they go.”
Weinstein has been accused of sexual harassment and assault by scores of actresses. He denies all allegations of non-consensual sex.
The chat show host made reference to the scandal earlier on in his opening monologue when he said: “I’m hopeful things will go smoothly this year, we can’t ruin this one, this is a special year.
“This is a big one, these are the 90th Academy Awards, this is history happening right here.
“Our friend Oscar is 90 years old, so that means he is probably at home right now watching Fox News.
“After all the awards given for achievements in showbusiness, Oscar is still number one, Oscar is the most beloved and respected man in Hollywood and there is a very good reason why, he keeps his hands where you can see them, never says a rude word, and most importantly no penis at all.
“He is literally a statue of limitations and that is the kind of men we need more of in this town.”
Kimmel also referred to the best picture fiasco of the 2017 ceremony, when Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty announced La La Land had won the award instead of the actual winner Moonlight.
He said: “It’s a great honour to be invited back for a second time.
“Some of you will be going home tonight with an Academy Award, what can be better than that?
“This year, when you hear your name called, don’t get up right away, give us a minute, we don’t want another thing.”