Top 5 wish list for Oscar host
Want to know the five scariest words in Hollywood right now?
"You're hosting the Academy Awards."
Think about it. It's nearly always a thankless job — an asterisk rather than an avatar on any actor's resume. And those who try and fail wear it as a scarlet letter for years to come. Just ask Jon Stewart and David Letterman, two of the funniest men alive and yet they both laid an egg on their big nights.
As Oscar nominations come out Tuesday, we can begin looking ahead to Feb. 27, when James Franco and Anne Hathaway will serve as co-hosts of the 83rd Academy Awards. How will they do? Probably better than Paul Hogan in '87. And probably far short of any appearance by the gold statue standard, Billy Crystal.
Here are five more names, who have yet to have the honor, whom we'd like to see host Hollywood's big night.
|•1JIMMY FALLON Improbably, Fallon has become the best late-night host on television — the traditional proving ground for this gig. And his heart-pounding musical comedy Bruce Springsteen number to open last year's Emmy Awards was worthy of an Oscar itself. He can sing. He can dance. He can host!||•2Queen Latifah After scoring a Best Supporting Actress nod for Chicago, this Queen became Hollywood royalty. After conquering the music, TV and big-screen worlds, this job seems like a demotion. Still, the former Pizza Hut and Jenny Craig spokeswoman could show those celebs a thing or two about humility.||•3robert downey jr. Bad boy meets class clown, Downey has the regal stature, singing-and-dancing chops and funny bone to be Oscar Night's Iron Man. Would he also have to worry about being a nominee the same night as host? Nah. The same karma could happen to Franco this year for 127 Hours.||•4tina fey Who out there wouldn't have loved to see her opposite Steve Martin or Alec Baldwin for last year's co-hosting duties? Television's smartest mind must be too obvious a choice for the academy to consider. (Or she's the one turning them down after no Oscar nods for Date Night.)||•5ricky gervais After his deep-frying of every A-Lister in the room at this year's Golden Globes, there's only one thing to say: We want more! Book Gervais for this show, give him the green light on his material, and sit back and watch as the stars squirm in their seats all night long. Ratings gold mine!|
|But not these five|
|1. JAY LENO: Can you believe he's never hosted it? We can.||2. EDDIE MURPHY: Unless he can channel his stand-up days, Murphy's not funny.||3. KATHY GRIFFIN: Does the awards show have a seven-second delay? It'd need one.||4. STEPHEN COLBERT: Hollywood is political enough without adding this wild card.||5. RYAN SEACREST: With apologies to American Idol fans, Seacrest out!|
By Steve Spears, Times Staff Writer
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