LOS ANGELES, Oct. 21 (UPI) -- Actor, comedian and filmmaker Chris Rock is to host the 88th Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences confirmed.
The ceremony honoring excellence in cinema will be broadcast live Feb. 28 on ABC.
The 50-year-old entertainer previously hosted the 77th Oscars telecast in 2005. Since then, hosts have come and gone with varying degrees of success and a few notable failures. Ellen DeGeneres and Jon Stewart have each hosted twice. Long-time emcee Billy Crystal returned as a late fill-in after Eddie Murphy backed out of 2012's gala, and Seth McFarlane gave a boost to ratings, but offended many older viewers with his off-color humor.
"Chris Rock is truly the MVP of the entertainment industry," producers David Hill and Reginald Hudlin said in a joint statement Wednesday. "Comedian, actor, writer, producer, director, documentarian – he's done it all. He's going to be a phenomenal Oscar host!"
"I'm so glad to be hosting the Oscars," Rock added. "It's great to be back."
"We share David and Reggie's excitement in welcoming Chris, whose comedic voice has really defined a generation," remarked Academy President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. "He is certain to bring his amazing array of talents to this year's show."
"Chris Rock is a comedic powerhouse who will bring tremendous energy to the event, and we're honored to have him," commented Paul Lee, president of ABC Entertainment Group.