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Oscar Shake-up: Billy Crystal to host 2012 Academy Awards

the Hollywood Reporter

Many in Hollywood are applauding the Academy's move to hire Billy Crystal and Brian Grazer as host and producer, respectively, of this year's Oscar telecast.

The news of their hiring came last week after Brett Ratner departed Tuesday as producer amid a slew of controversial and offensive comments. Host Eddie Murphy, who is on the big screen in Ratner's latest movie,Tower Heist, announced his own departure the following day.

The news instantly led to speculation that Crystal - an eight-time Oscar host - would be tapped to step into the hosting role once again. Crystal has been praised for his hosting work on the show in the past, but many critics called him and Grazer "safe" choices compared with the producer-host duo of Ratner and Murphy, which was seemingly intended to be more edgy and lure younger viewers.

The Academy wasted no time in announcing Grazer as the new producer on Wednesday, followed by Crystal's announcement the next day.

Academy president Tom Sherak quipped about the week's events at Saturday night's Governors Awards honoring Oprah Winfrey, James Earl Jones and makeup artist Dick Smith in Los Angeles.

The Academy’s President Tom Sherak said, ‘Bringing Billy back home is a good thing. He’s funny. He’s a comic by trade and he’s an iconic Oscar host.’


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