Seth MacFarlane is hosting the Academy Awards.
God help us, who ever thought we’d be seeing THOSE words all put together?
The grinning mischief-maker behind the not-so-warm-and-fuzzy teddy bear of Ted, and the animated hits Family Guy, American Dad and The Cleveland Show will be the emcee of the 85th annual Oscars on Feb. 24, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced today.
It’s a bold and unexpected move, especially since he has never hosted another awards show, although MacFarlane proved himself more than capable on live TV with a recent Saturday Night Live hosting gig, which in retrospect would seem to be a major part of this Academy Awards audition.
He’s also been Master of Ceremonies at one other slightly less prestigious event …
“It’s truly an overwhelming privilege to be asked to host the Oscars,” MacFarlane said in a statement. “My thoughts upon hearing the news were, one, I will do my utmost to live up to the high standards set forth by my predecessors; and two, I hope they don’t find out I hosted the Charlie Sheen Roast.”
The Oscars tend to like their hosts to have some kind of movie background — think Billy Crystal, Hugh Jackman, Steve Martin, Whoopi Goldberg, or even the ill-fated work of James Franco and Anne Hathaway. TV-only hosts have sometimes felt out-of-place, such as David Letterman’s infamous flop in the mid-1990s.
Others have straddled both worlds — such as Ellen Degeneres, Chris Rock, or Jon Stewart (who loves to mock his undistinguished filmmography,) and MacFarlane would fit this category. His Ted, which he wrote, directed, and produced — in addition to voicing the big fuzzy lead — made $434 million worldwide this summer. In Hollywood’s eyes, that means … Welcome to being a movie guy, Seth!
Fans of MacFarlane’s work also know he has a long, respected history of absolutely skewering pop culture at every possible opportunity, which for viewers will make him an ideal host who could pop a pin into the self-important blow-hardery that can sometimes accompany prestigious awards shows. Also, maybe Ted and Stewie Griffin will make an appearance in some capacity. (Hey, it happened at the Emmys.)
Purists may sneer, but those looking for a little more irreverence at the Oscars will surely be rejoicing over the Academy’s decision to choose a host from the misbehaving row in the back of the class.
MacFarlane has already poked a little fun at the Oscars, as you can see from this Family Guy clip:
Ironically, Daniel Day-Lewis is a lock on an Oscar nomination this year for Lincoln. As for Grover and “a boob” … we’ll just have to wait and see how awards season plays out.
The Oscar ceremony will take place at the Dolby Theatre in the Hollywood & Highland complex, with Don Mischer, who co-produced last year, directing the telecast and Craig Zadan and Neil Meron producing.
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