LOS ANGELES - Departing from tradition, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Friday that Australian actor Hugh Jackman will host next year’s Oscar telecast.
The selection of Jackman, the star of “Australia,” several “X-Men” films and “The Prestige,” breaks a long string of Academy Awards shows in which comics such as Jon Stewart, Steve Martin, David Letterman, Chris Rock, Ellen DeGeneres and Billy Crystal served as host.
Hugh Jackman to host next Oscar ceremony
The last time a comic did not host the Oscar ceremony was in 1989, when the telecast had no formal host. Starting the next year, Crystal hosted four straight telecasts, and was succeeded in 1994 by Whoopi Goldberg. She hosted four telecasts, and Crystal came on to emcee four additional times for a total of eight.
“Hugh Jackman is a consummate entertainer and an internationally renowned movie star. He also has style, elegance and a sense of occasion. Hugh is the ideal choice to host a celebration of the year’s movies - and to have fun doing it,” producers Laurence Mark and Bill Condon said in a joint statement.
The Oscars will take place on Feb. 22 in Los Angeles and will be broadcast on Walt Disney Co.‘s ABC network. Nominees will be announced Jan. 22.