LOS ANGELES, Oct. 15 (UPI) -- Entertainer Neil Patrick Harris is to host the Oscars ceremony for the first time in Los Angeles Feb. 22, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced Wednesday.
The event honoring excellence in cinema for 2014 is to be broadcast live on ABC.
Harris, a popular actor and awards-show host, starred on the long-running sitcom How I Met Your Mother and won a Tony this year for his performance in the Broadway musical Hedwig and the Angry Inch. He can now be seen in the big-screen blockbuster Gone Girl.
"We are thrilled to have Neil host the Oscars," producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron said in a statement. "We have known him his entire adult life, and we have watched him explode as a great performer in feature films, television and stage. To work with him on the Oscars is the perfect storm -- all of his resources and talent coming together on a global stage." "It is truly an honor and a thrill to be asked to host this year's Academy Awards. I grew up watching the Oscars and was always in such awe of some of the greats who hosted the show," added Harris. "To be asked to follow in the footsteps of Johnny Carson, Billy Crystal, Ellen DeGeneres, and everyone else who had the great fortune of hosting, is a bucket-list dream come true." "We share Craig and Neil's excitement in welcoming the incredibly talented Neil Patrick Harris," said Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the academy's president. "He is the consummate entertainer. Neil's distinctive charm and showmanship make him the ideal host to honor the Oscar legacy and insure we all enjoy another unforgettable celebration." Upon hearing the news, 2013 Oscars host Seth MacFarlane tweeted: "Congratulations to my uber-talented pal @ActuallyNPH on hosting the Oscars! They could not have made a better choice, except Mickey Rourke."