Jon Stewart, host of "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" was tapped today to host the 2006 Oscars®, ending speculation that the host might be Steve Martin, late-night hosts Jay Leno or Conan O'Brien. Stewart hosted the Grammys® Music Awards in 2001 and 2002.
The 43-year-old star of Comedy Central's "The Daily Show with Jon Stewart" follows a long line of standup comedians who have hosted the Oscars®: Bob Hope, Johnny Carson, Whoopi Goldberg, Chris Rock, Billy Crystal, etc.
"The Daily Show" has earned seven Emmys and a Peabody award. Stewart also won the 2005 Thurber Prize for American Humor for his book written with "The Daily Show" writers, America (The Book): A Citizen's Guide to Democracy Inaction.
"I love a comic who can deal with the unexpected and has the ability to run the room," said Gil Cates, the producer of this year's 78th Academy Awards®, airing 5 March on ABC. "The speed of mind and fearlessness of a comic really adds to the show. My wife and I watch him every night," he said. "Jon is the epitome of a perfect host -- smart, engaging, irreverent and funny."
"He's a very, very popular entertainer with a mind that is quick, and you need that on a show like this," said Sid Ganis, president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. "I'm very excited. Stewart is a superb choice — witty, current, intelligent and charming. What a terrific addition to our roster of great hosts!"
Hope these expectations are not too high. Good luck, Jon!