Chris Rock Returning to Host Oscars

Comic last emceed the Academy’s awards show in 2005

HOLLYWOOD - FEBRUARY 27: Comedian and host Chris Rock poses backstage during the 77th Annual Academy Awards on February 27, 2005 at the Kodak Theater in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Carlo Allegri/Getty Images)
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Chris Rock has been confirmed as the host of the 88th Academy Awards, the Academy announced on Wednesday. The stand-up comedian last emceed the Academy Awards in 2005, with reports that he was negotiating a return to the show circulating widely on Tuesday afternoon.

Rock will be in familiar company. New Oscars co-producer Reginald Hudlin directed the pilot of the Rock’s former TV series, “Everybody Hates Chris.”

Hudlin and David Hill are producing the coming awards season’s top night in film, which could really use a bounce-back year. March’s 87th Annual Academy Awards struggled in the ratings under first-time host Neil Patrick Harris.

“Chris Rock is truly the MVP of the entertainment industry,” said Hill and Hudlin in a statement. “Comedian, actor, writer, producer, director, documentarian – he’s done it all.”

Ellen DeGeneres hosted a year earlier (and also 2007); Seth MacFarlane was the emcee before that.

These coming Oscars will be held at Hollywood’s Dolby Theatre on Feb. 28, 2016.

Last year, when TheWrap asked Rock if he’d ever host the big night again, he said: “Oh yeah. If they asked me, yeah, I’d definitely do it again. Definitely definitely.”