Ellen DeGeneres to Host Oscars

Ellen DeGeneres
Ellen DeGeneres
 A.M.P.A.S

Ellen DeGeneres will host this year's Oscars. DeGeneres herself announced the news Friday morning on Twitter, writing, "It's official: I'm hosting the #Oscars! I'd like to thank @TheAcademy, my wife Portia and, oh dear, there goes the orchestra."

The Academy is getting an early start on next year's Oscar show. In April, it rehired producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron to produce next year's 86th Academy Awards, which will air March 2 on ABC. The decision to bring back the two producers was made by outgoing president Hawk Koch, with the blessing of the board of governors, even though the decision is usually left to the current Academy president.

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DeGeneres' announcement comes immediately after Cheryl Boone Isaacs was elected new president of the Academy on Tuesday. She promptly endorsed the selection of the two producers and said her first order of business was meeting with them to decide on a host.

Choosing DeGeneres, known for her kindler, gentler humor, signals that the Academy's next awards show will have a decidedly different tone than the 85th Academy Awards, hosted by Seth MacFarlane, who drew criticism for routines like his song about actresses' nudity on film.

DeGeneres previously hosted the show in 2007 and earned a Primetime Emmy nomination for her work.

"I am so excited to be hosting the Oscars for the second time. You know what they say -- the third time's the charm," DeGeneres said in a statement.

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Zadan and Meron added: "We are thrilled to have Ellen DeGeneres host the Oscars. As a longtime friend, we had always hoped to find a project for us to do together, and nothing could be more exciting than teaming up to do the Oscars. There are few stars today who have Ellen's gift for comedy, with her great warmth and humanity. She is beloved everywhere and we expect that the audience at the Dolby Theatre, and in homes around the globe, will be as excited by this news as we are."
 
DeGeneres, who's had success on TV but few well-known film roles, recently announced a sequel to the Disney/Pixar hit Finding Nemo called Finding Dory, in which she would return to voice the beloved forgetful fish.
 
Newly elected Academy President Boone Isaacs said, "I agreed with Craig and Neil immediately that Ellen is the ideal host for this year's show. We're looking forward to an entertaining, engaging and fun show."
 
Academy CEO Dawn Hudson added: "Ellen is talented, wonderfully spontaneous, and knows how to entertain a worldwide audience. She's a big fan of the Oscars; we're huge fans of hers. It's a perfect match."
 
Meanwhile, ABC Entertainment Group president Paul Lee said, "It is an honor to welcome back Ellen DeGeneres as the host of the biggest entertainment celebration of the year. She is the consummate entertainer, equally beloved by her peers in the industry, movie fans and television viewers. We very much look forward to having her back on ABC for Oscar Sunday."
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