Hugh Jackman to host new-look Oscars

December 12, 2008 9:58:46 AM PST
Hugh Jackman will host the 81st annual Oscars, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences confirmed Friday.

The 40-year-old Australian actor, recently named People magazine's "Sexiest Man Alive," won an Emmy in 2005 for hosting the 59th annual Tony Awards in 2004. He was also nominated as host of the Tonys in 2005.

Jackman, who first claimed fame as Wolverine in the "X-Men" movie franchise, recently starred in Baz Luhrmann's romantic adventure film "Australia" with Nicole Kidman. He was out of the country Friday for a world promotional tour for the film and was not immediately available for comment, his representative Alan Nierob said.

He's never been an Oscar nominee, but was nominated for a Golden Globe for his role in 2001's romantic film "Kate & Leopold." His other movie credits include 2006's "The Prestige" and 2004's "Van Helsing."

With new producers, a new set director and even a new music director, the Academy has been hinting at an all new look and feel for this year's Oscars telecast on Feb. 22.

Jackman's selection is a departure from the Academy's standard of big-name comedians. Jon Stewart, host of "The Daily Show," hosted the ceremony in 2008 and 2006; Ellen DeGeneres was the 2007 host. Chris Rock, Steve Martin, Billy Crystal and Whoopi Goldberg have also hosted the show in recent years.


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