Billy Crystal To Host 2012 Oscars

Crystal returns after producer Brett Ratner and host Eddie Murphy stepped down earlier this week.

Another day, another headline-making story surrounding the already-turbulent 2012 Oscars. This time, the story has a more safe and familiar ring to it: Billy Crystal has officially signed on to host the show.

Crystal spilled the beans via Twitter on Thursday afternoon (November 10).

“Am doing the Oscars so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions,” he wrote. “Looking forward to the show.”

Following Crystal’s tweet, the Academy released a statement confirming the hosting news. “Some of the best moments of my career have happened on the Oscar stage,” Crystal said in the statement. “I am thrilled to be back there.”

This will be Crystal’s ninth time hosting Hollywood’s main event, and at age 63, he will be the oldest solo host of the show since Bob Hope in 1978 (Steve Martin was 64 when he co-hosted with Alec Baldwin in 2010).

Crystal’s appointment should receive a warm welcome from Academy members after the storm of controversy surrounding onetime producer Brett Ratner , who resigned Tuesday over his gay slur at a recent “Tower Heist” screening, followed by host Eddie Murphy . The “When Harry Met Sally” star received a standing ovation from the Oscar audience last year when he appeared onstage briefly to honor Bob Hope.

Crystal will join recently announced producer Brian Grazer and industry vet Don Mischer in revamping the show, which will be broadcast February 26, 2012.

The announcement of the new host has thwarted efforts of a spirited online campaign for the Muppets to host the show, but it doesn’t necessarily rule out a possible appearance, according to chief cheerleader, @MuppetOscars. “Just b/c Billy Crystal’s hosting, doesn’t mean the Muppets won’t make an appearance!” they tweeted when the announcement broke.

Are you excited for Billy’s return as host? Let us know in the comments!