Television host and comedian Ellen Degeneres has been tapped to host the Oscars for a second time, producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron confirmed this morning. The 86th Academy Awards will air March 2, 2014, on ABC.
“We are thrilled to have Ellen DeGeneres host the Oscars,” Zadan and Meron said in a statement. “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 Theater, and in homes around the globe, will be as excited by this news as we are.”
“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 joked.
Degeneres hosted the 79th Academy Awards on February 25, 2007, earning an Emmy nomination for outstanding individual performance in a variety or music program for her performance. She also scored positive reviews from critics after the telecast.
“Ellen is talented, wonderfully spontaneous, and knows how to entertain a worldwide audience,” said Academy CEO Dawn Hudson. “She’s a big fan of the Oscars; we’re huge fans of hers. It’s a perfect match.”
Hosting the Oscars is an extremely risky proposition. Each performance is heavily scrutinized. Good reviews can cement the career of the host, while bad reviews are a permanent stain on the resume of any entertainer.
Some, such as Billy Crystal, Whoopi Goldberg, Johnny Carson and Steve Martin, have risen to the occasion and delivered a memorable show. Others, including Anne Hathaway and James Franco, David Letterman, Chevy Chase and Chris Rock, bore the brunt of scathing reviews after their hosting stints.
As she hosts the Oscars for the second time next year, Ellen Degeneres will be looking to avoid a sophomore slump.