THR Poll: Oscar Viewers Want Eddie Murphy as Host

Eddie Murphy - On "The Tonight Show With Jay Leno - H - 2011
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Following Brett Ratner's sudden departure as producer of the 84th Academy Awards, the "Tower Heist" star remains mum about his hosting gig.

In the wake of Brett Ratner's sudden exit as Oscar producer, the question remains whether Eddie Murphy will fulfill his duties as host of the 84th Academy Awards.

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Murphy was recruited for the job by Ratner after working together on Universal's Tower Heist, released last week. The Hollywood Reporter enlisted Penn Schoen Berland to gauge viewer interest via an online survey of 550 awards show viewers ages 13 to 59 taken Nov. 6.

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Results were compared against a sample of 450 viewers interviewed after James Franco and Anne Hathaway were announced as hosts in 2010.

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72%: Awards show viewers who support Murphy as Oscar host

? Only 54 percent supported Franco/Hathaway in 2010

? A strong 74 percent of awards show fans intend to watch Murphy, up from 66 percent for Franco/Hathaway

? Men and African Americans are much more likely to watch

85%: Tower Heist moviegoers who support Murphy as Oscar host

? 91 percent of Tower Heist viewers plan to watch Murphy host

? Viewers say Murphy will be "fun," "entertaining" and "over the top" compared to the 2011 hosts

? But they say the show will be less "stylish" and "classy"