Anne Hathaway and James Franco to Host the Oscars
11.30.10 by Ryan
THR reports that the producers of the 83rd Academy Awards have announced that the annual awards show will continue to feature two hosts, but have opted for the younger pairing of non-comedian actors Anne Hathaway and James Franco.
"We loved the job that Alec [Baldwin] and Steve [Martin] did last year as a duo," said producer Bruce Cohen. "And it hasn’t been since 1957 that a man and a woman have co-hosted together [Jerry Lewis and Celeste Holm], so we thought it was time for a male movie star and a female movie star to co-host. As a film producer, casting is always one of the most important and most fun parts of the process. So [producer] Don [Mischer] and I were looking for a combination that you hadn’t seen before, but when you heard it, you thought, "That’s exciting."
Cohen explained that the idea of using a tandem of movie stars after Tina Fey and former host Hugh Jackman declined to host, but Mischer admitted that the producers "have a concept" for Hathaway and Franco, but couldn't "elaborate on it very much at this point since it’s still in progress."
We felt that an interesting thread running through the show is the enduring power of motion pictures. They transcend generations, and each new generation rediscovers classic films on their own. On Oscar night, we’ll be celebrating the great films of the year, but we’ll also be making references to some of the great films of the past. But to do that through the eyes of two young actors who are emerging as major talents in film — we felt that was a great way to go.
Hathaway and Franco are more than just "emerging" talents, they both could potentially be nominated as well — Hathaway for Love and Other Drugs and Franco for 127 Hours. There's no telling whether hosting will help or hurt their chances of winning an Oscar, should they be nominated. Entertainment blogger Tom O'Neil told THR that hosting "MIGHT help Hathaway to be nominated," while Jeff Wells opined that Franco's chances are slim, as hosting "will probably kill his shot at being a Best Actor nominee... the Oscar telecast host can't win the Best Actor Oscar!" That's not exactly true. David Niven won a 1959 Oscar for Separate Tables while co-hosting, but the odds aren't overwhelmingly positive, either.