Comedian and actor Billy Crystal has been selected to host the Oscars next year, replacing former frontman for the job Eddie Murphy, who dropped out just days ago.
Crystal tweeted, "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."
Murphy declined the job following suit of Brett Ratner, the director for his movie "Tower Heist." Ratner, who was scheduled to produce the 84th Academy Awards show, but resigned after angering some people when he uttered a gay slur at the movie premiere.
This will by Crystal's ninth time hosting the Oscars, and he will be the oldest at the age of 63 to host the show alone since Bob Hope in 1978.
"Some of the best moments of my career have happened on the Oscar stage,'' said Crystal in a statement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. "I am thrilled to be back there.''
Academy executives are hoping to improve ratings that have been dwindling over the past few years with Crystal's return. The show has been trying to appeal more to a younger audience, according to USA Today, but selecting actors James Franco and Anne Hathaway to host last year's Oscars proved unsuccessful and did not help ratings at all. Crystal is seen as a more stable choice, as his previous hosting gigs have done well.
Brian Grazer, the newly selected producer for the awards show, said he is thrilled to have the "When Harry Met Sally" star come back to host.
"Like so many others, I've been eager to see Billy host again," he said in a statement. "It's very gratifying that he agreed to do it with Don and me at the helm."