Jon Stewart is Hosting the Oscars

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Jon Stewart has been set to host the 78th Academy Awards telecast, producer Gil Cates announced today. This will be Stewart’s first stint as Oscar host.

“My wife and I watch him every night,” Cates said. “Jon is the epitome of a perfect host — smart, engaging, irreverent and funny.”

Academy President Sid Ganis echoed Cates’ enthusiasm. “I’m very excited,” he said. “Stewart is a superb choice — witty, current, intelligent and charming. What a terrific addition to our roster of great hosts!”

The host of Comedy Central’s multiple Emmy- and Peabody- winning “The Daily Show with Jon Stewart,” Stewart has transformed “The Daily Show” into one of America’s most influential and popular television shows. Stewart and the writers of “The Daily Show” also authored America (The Book): A Citizen’s Guide to Democracy Inaction at the end of 2004. The book, which was recently awarded the Thurber Prize for American Humor, was a staple on The New York Times best sellers list for 46 consecutive weeks, including 15 consecutive weeks in the #1 position.

“As a performer, I’m truly honored to be hosting the show,” said Stewart. “Although, as an avid watcher of the Oscars, I can’t help but be a little disappointed with the choice. It appears to be another sad attempt to smoke out Billy Crystal.”

Stewart has appeared in several motion pictures, including Death to Smoochy, Big Daddy, The Faculty and Playing by Heart.

Prior to taking over “The Daily Show” in 1999, Stewart’s television credits included a one-hour HBO comedy special, “Jon Stewart: Unleavened,” and a recurring role as himself on HBO’s series-within-a-series, “The Larry Sanders Show.” He also hosted “The Jon Stewart Show” on MTV, which went on to be nationally syndicated.

Stewart has recently been featured on “Oprah” and “60 Minutes.”

The ceremonies honoring 2005 achievements in motion pictures will be held on Sunday, March 5, 2006. The 78th Annual Academy Awards Presentation will be broadcast live from the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland by the ABC Television Network, beginning at 5:00 p.m. PST.

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