Comic and daytime television host Ellen DeGeneres will host the Academy Awards next year for the second time.
Show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron announced DeGeneres’ selection today. The movie awards show airs on ABC on March 2.
“There are few stars today who have Ellen’s gift for comedy, with her great warmth and humanity,” the producers said in a statement. “She is beloved everywhere.”
DeGeneres quipped: “I am so excited to be hosting the Oscars for the second time. You know what they say — the third time’s the charm.”
She also announced the gig on Twitter, posting: “It’s official: I’m hosting the #Oscars! I’d like to thank @TheAcademy, my wife Portia and, oh dear, there goes the orchestra.”
Last year’s host, “Family Guy” creator Seth MacFarlane, drew mixed reviews for an edgy performance that included a song-and-dance number, “We Saw Your Boobs,” about actresses who had gone topless on screen. He took himself out of the running for a return engagement next year.
Academy Awards organizers had hoped to attract a younger audience with MacFarlane, and the ratings showed they succeeded.
With DeGeneres, they went for a star that Hollywood and television viewers are familiar and comfortable with.
Commenting on her first hosting role in 2007, AP television critic Frazier Moore wrote, “Like her, the evening was easygoing, comfortable and relatively unsurprising.”
DeGeneres was nominated for an Emmy Award for her last gig. Her daytime talk show has won 45 Daytime Emmys during its decade on the air.
The Oscars, with 40.3 million viewers this year, is often the year’s most-watched television event after the Super Bowl.