Billy Crystal hosting the Oscars [Updated]

billy-crystal-sophia-loren.jpg UPDATE 6:48 p.m. ET: The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has confirmed that Billy Crystal will host the 84th Academy Awards. "I'm thrilled to welcome Billy back to the Oscar stage," Academy president Tom Sherak says in a statement. "He's a comic legend and Oscar icon, and it feels good to have him back where he belongs."

Producer Brian Grazer says, "Like so many others, I've been eager to see Billy host again. It's very gratifying that he agreed to do it with Don and me at the helm."

UPDATE 6:25 p.m. ET: Billy Crystal is officially hosting the 2012 Oscars, Deadline confirms.

After the whole Brett Ratner kerfuffle, it makes sense that new Oscar producer Brian Grazer would want to take a safe route.

That's why, despite the fact that we're totally into the idea of the Muppets taking over for Eddie Murphy as host of the 2012 Academy Awards, another well-known is a little more realistic: Billy Crystal.

Considering his latest tweet, it looks like the eight-time Oscar host could be headed for a ninth stint. "Am doing the Oscars so the young woman in the pharmacy will stop asking my name when I pick up my prescriptions. Looking forward to the show," he tweeted.

Crystal could've been joking, considering there's been no official announcement, but he also could've simply spoken before all the contracts we're signed.

Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Tom Sherak told The Wrap recently that he didn't think Crystal was too old to host, saying "Bob Hope did the Oscars in his sixties." 

Sherak also promised an official host would be named within the next two weeks. "My hope is it happens early rather than later."
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