EXCLUSIVE: Seth MacFarlane Oscar Host

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Seth MacFarlane Hosting OscarsEXCLUSIVE: I’ve just learned that the Academy Of Motion Picture Arts And Sciences will announce today that TV, film, stage, and singing star Seth MacFarlane will host the 85th Academy Awards. The Emmy-winning TV animation mogul was chosen in large part for mastermindng Summer 2012′s huge R-rated comedy motion picture Ted: the $420 million worldwide box office hit was MacFarlane’s feature directorial debut, and he co-wrote and produced and voiced the title character, too. The success of the pic gave him street cred with the snobby film community. And it now looks  as if MacFarlane’s hosting stint September 15th on Saturday Night Live‘s fall season premiere was a tryout for Oscar telecast producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron. He did well, especially during his standup where he sang and did voices and looked great and was thoroughly entertaining.

Related: ‘SNL’: Host Seth MacFarlane Monologue

Of course during the Emmys he didn’t find his mark and stood on the stage awkwardly when he was a presenter. But that, too, showed he could roll with the punches and he made a joke and continued. All in all, it’s an inspired choice by the Academy and seems certain to bring in younger demographics which is what the telecast needs desperately to boost ratings. Also MacFarlane is that rare multitalent: actor, voice actor, animator, screenwriter, comedian, producer, director, and singer. He is best known as the creator of Family Guy (1999–present) and as co-creator of American Dad! (2005–present) and The Cleveland Show (2009–present) — all shows syndicated overseas which also should help with international Oscar viewership. MacFarlane will host Hollywood’s biggest night on February 24th, 2013, for ABC live at the Dolby Theatre.

UPDATE: The Academy has confirmed MacFarlane’s selection. Here’s the official release:

BEVERLY HILLS, CA – Seth MacFarlane will host the 85th Academy Awards®, telecast producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced today. This will be MacFarlane’s first appearance on Oscar’s stage. The 85th Academy Awards will be broadcast live on Oscar® Sunday, February 24, on the ABC Television Network.

“We are thrilled to have Seth MacFarlane host the Oscars. His performing skills blend perfectly with our ideas for making the show entertaining and fresh,” said Zadan and Meron. “He will be the consummate host, and we are so happy to be working with him.”

“It’s truly an overwhelming privilege to be asked to host the Oscars,” said MacFarlane. “My thoughts upon hearing the news were, one, I will do my utmost to live up to the high standards set forth by my predecessors; and two, I hope they don’t find out I hosted the Charlie Sheen Roast.”

“Seth is unbelievably talented,” said Academy President Hawk Koch. “We couldn’t be happier with the creative team we’ve assembled. With Craig, Neil, and now Seth, we’re off to a great start.”

MacFarlane made his feature directorial debut this summer with the box office success “Ted. “He also co-wrote and produced the film, and voiced the title character. “Ted” has brought in over $420 million worldwide, making it one of the highest-grossing films of the year.

MacFarlane is the creative force behind the television series “Family Guy” and co-creator of “American Dad!” and “The Cleveland Show. “In September he hosted “Saturday Night Live” for the first time, for the show’s 38th season premiere. An accomplished live performer, MacFarlane has played to sold-out audiences at London’s Royal Albert Hall and New York’s Carnegie Hall. In 2011 he released his debut album, “Music Is Better Than Words,” which earned two Grammy® nominations. He also has earned 13 Emmy® nominations and won two for his work on “Family Guy.”

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2012 will be presented on Sunday, February 24, 2013, at the Dolby Theatre™ at Hollywood & Highland Center®. Don Mischer will direct the telecast for the third consecutive time. The Oscar presentation also will be televised live in more than 225 countries worldwide.

  1. Good god…in a town with so much talent, we have to revert to old childish potty humor to host the Oscars? A guy so full of himself, he won’t even notice he’s around real talent.

    1. C’mon, this is a brilliant choice! The simple fact that the boards are lighting up already with people jawing about MacFarlane illustrates they made a bold if controversial choice, and bold and controversial get eyeballs.

      I don’t know the man (so I can’t speak to what he’s like behind closed doors, but I suspect pretty much everyone here offering an opinion can’t either), but I think he’s exceptionally talented (seriously, look at what he’s done already in his career). And let’s get real, the Oscars are not the Nobels or Pulitizers – we’re talking about wealthy actors, producers, directors etc. patting each other on the back. Why shouldn’t the host liven that up a bit? Bob Hope is dead. Carson is dead. Crystal, well, soon enough. Inject some life into these shows.

    2. Very happy about this and hope he will sing as he has one of the greatest voices for the real American classic music such as that performed at the Albert Hall in London recently and his many voice talents will be useful also in making the Oscars a hit.

  2. All I can think of is a 4 letter word. Yuck! Did we not learn anything from the Brett Ratner incident last year? Jeez.

  3. Geez, they do this every year and now it doesn’t even matter. 99% of the public don’t know who this guy is – but Johnny Carson, Bob Hope he ain’t. This show is in real danger of becoming completely so unimportant that it will end up like the Miss America Pageant.

    1. Do you really care who hosts the Oscars? Like, really? The show is a PR push for films, a pr push for a tv network, a pr push for clothing and jewelry, and not unlike US politics, the right campaign with the most money spent, can get the Oscar nod – regardless of the film (Up In The Air, Crash anyone?)…. stop taking this stuff so seriously. And it is no different than Miss America – just with celebs whose image many people believe as opposed to 18 year olds in bikinis. And it plays right into the hands of narcissistic actors who take themselves so seriously. And once it’s over everyone just talks about how bad it was.
      I much prefer the shock on the interviewers face when confronting Sasha Baron Cohen about his urn toss on Ryan Seacrest and whether he was concerned about back-lash: “it’s never been my dream to be nominated or win an academy award, I couldn’t care less”.
      Silence….

      you mean it doesn’t have to mean that much? really? the horror.

  4. Not a good choice. He’s an incredible talent, but the man’s ego is beyond belief. It will be all about how clever, smart and aware of irony Seth is, not about honoring those who work in the film business.

  5. Really, this is the best they could do? I can’t stand his shows. This is just an attempt to pull in people that would not otherwise watch, completely neglecting the viewers that turn in year after year. I might just have to read about it the next morning this year.

  6. Every one of his intros and segues are going to be “This reminds me of the time” and then a quick cut to a clip of the nominee with a low-brow visual gag tacked onto it.

  7. Christ, not THIS guy.

    I love Family Guy and American Dad but MacFarlane has become increasingly insufferable with his self adoring, smug song and dance shtick. He’s convinced himself that he’s absolutely “ADORABLE” and he has a small army of aged college bois who fules his ego. As someone else said, in a city and state overfull with talent, WHY this man?

    1. I’m gay and I think this guy is absolutely adorable. Even since his low key karaoke ‘performances’ at Brass Monkey. I’d rather much see him than someone who’s done too much botox in HD.

    2. I’m straight and I think this guy is absolutely adorable. And very talented. Billy Crystal was great this year, but Hollywood really needs to find someone younger(not too young though) who is talented, funny and likeable.

  8. I’m genuinely impressed and shocked. He was nowhere on people’s radar for suggestions, yet now he makes complete (and obvious) sense

  9. It’s a bold and intriguing choice, but pretty strange considering they thought Chris Rock was “too edgy!”

  10. As my 65 year old mother will say upon hearing the news, “Who is this Seth McFarlin?” This is not to insult Seth’s accomplishments behind the scenes, but the majority of the public (in the U.S. and abroad) have NO CLUE who he is UNLESS he does his animated voices — and even then Stewie, Brian the Dog and Quagmire are not household names. With this school of thought, why not have Trey and Matt host the show? Or Steve Whitmore? Don’t know who Steve Whitmore is? The voice of Kermit The Frog.

  11. The Academy prides itself on being such a quality organization (and it has been)–but now they’re really feeling their age, and pandering to youth and stupidity, they are completely out of their mind. How will they put McFarlane and the likes of Nicole Kidman on the same stage? Bring back Rob Lowe and Snow White, please, in comparison, a class act.

  12. THIS IS JUST HUGE!!!

    Kudos to everyone involved with this decision! Hopefully he will liven up the evening while avoiding any dick/puke/fart joke. It’s a tough challenge but I’m sure he can manage.

  13. If ever there was a clear indicator of the sorry state of movies today this is it. Are you kidding me, this is the guy you roll out for the biggest night in the movies? Wasn’t James Franco putrid enough? How do you guy from hosting Comedy Central roasts to the oscars? I mean if that’s the case we should have Jeff Ross be the co-host.

  14. This guy SUCKS… And his schtick is so boring… doing the same freaking thing during every one of his routines. And he was awful at the Emmy’s. The presenters used to be true class acts in the hollywood scene and now the Academy has resorted to this smug douche bag (who clearly has something to compensate for) in hopes to generate ratings. I will not be tuning in.

  15. Wow, lots of negative comments. Not a huge fan but I thought his SNL appearance was *extremely* good, the Academy show could do a lot worse
    (I mean, could he possibly be worse than Franco?).

    1. Yes, actually–cause Franco was a bad choice, but was sort of harmless. McFarlane’s not really a movie guy, and he’s not really talented. Could be a disastrous three-ring circus, one that’s not even about or for movies. I mean, let’s focus, folks!

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