While this news is still nowhere near official, several sources over the weekend have reported that none other than Eddie Murphy is currently the top choice of producers Don Mischer and Brett Ratner to host next year’s Oscar ceremony.
The rumoured selection might seem fairly surprising – after all, the publicity-shy Murphy hasn’t performed on stage for two decades and isn’t exactly known as someone used to hosting events.
But consider his experience: he made his name performing stand-up and he’s certainly got the sort of comedic brain that would work well on a live show (even if most of the material from his past wouldn’t exactly pass muster with TV censors…) He’s a performer, and a charismatic one at that, and has enjoyed a successful (if not always critically so) film career. Plus, rumours recently surfaced of him looking to get back to his comedic roots, and what better launch pad than a show watched by billions?
Then there’s the Ratner connection: Murphy is starring in the director’s comedy crime drama Tower Heist alongside Ben Stiller and Alan Alda, which hits our cinemas on November 4. So it makes sense that he’d be someone that Ratner would consider.
We’ll have to see if it actually pans out, though the LA Times reports that an announcement could happen as early as this week. So what do you think? Should Murphy be the man? Could he? And wouldn’t he be better than James Franco?
The Academy Awards will be handed out on February 26 next year.