October 30, 2020

Billy Crystal returning to host the Oscars

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Billy Crystal is doing it again.

The 63-year-old comedian and veteran Oscar host said Thursday on Twitter that he is hosting this season’s Academy Awards “so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions.”

“Some of the best moments of my career have happened on the Oscar stage,” said Crystal in a later statement from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. “I am thrilled to be back there.”

This will be the ninth Oscar stint for Crystal, one of the most popular Oscar hosts of recent years. His last time was in 2004. Only Bob Hope hosted more Oscar shows, with 19 ceremonies between 1940 and 1978.

Academy president Tom Sherak called Crystal “a comic legend and Oscar icon, and it feels good to have him back where he belongs.”

The naming of Crystal follows a groundswell of sentiment for his return after he led a tribute to Bob Hope on the 2011 Oscar show for which he received a standing ovation. Crystal said later he was moved by the warm reception and that “it might be fun” to host the show again.

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