Billy Crystal to Host Oscars

Comics 2
Billy Crystal to host Oscars
Billy Crystal (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello, file)

From one Long Islander to another.

The people at the Academy Awards didn’t waste any time finding Eddie Murphy’s replacement for next year’s Academy Awards, selecting longtime comedian and fellow Long Islander Billy Crystal as the new host of the show, according to reports.

A reporter for Variety tweeted on Thursday that the Academy has confirmed that Crystal, 63, will host the awards show.

Crystal also took to Twitter to announce the news, saying: “Am doing the Oscars so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions. Looking forward to the show.”

In what was going to be his first Oscars hosting gig, Murphy, dropped out of the show on Wednesday after producer Brett Ratner quit after he used a gay slur when discussing production of the show.

“First and foremost I want to say that I completely understand and support each party’s decision with regard to a change of producers for this year’s Academy Awards ceremony,” Murphy stated in a news release. “I was truly looking forward to being a part of the show that our production team and writers were just starting to develop, but I’m sure that the new production team and host will do an equally great job.”

When it was announced in September that the “Nutty Professor” star would host the Oscars, Ratner called Murphy a “comedic genius” that will bring “excitement, spontaneity and tremendous heart to the show.”

Ratner’s exit from the popular award show didn’t come without controversy. During a recent Q&A session, Ratner blurted out “Rehearsal is for f***,” when he was asked about his rehearsal process.

In response to his resignation, Academy President Tom Sherak, said Ratner did the “right thing” for the Academy and himself. “Words have meaning, and they have consequences,” he said in a statement. “Brett is a good person, but his comments were unacceptable. We all hope this will be an opportunity to raise awareness about the harm that is caused by reckless and insensitive remarks, regardless of the intent.”

Now the person tasked with the mission of politely dishing out jokes during the Oscars on Feb. 26 is Crystal. The 84th Academy Awards will be broadcasted live on ABC at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood and Highland Center.