Neil Patrick Harris is the latest personality entrusted with the difficult, risky and often downright stupid responsibility of hosting the biggest night in movies, the Oscars. Such is the emphasis placed on the host of the Academy Awards, it often shapes the reporting, live-blogging and most of the reaction to the ceremony, with the nominees left as an afterthought.

Neil Patrick HarrisNeil Patrick Harris will host the Oscars in February

The Academy have struggled to find an appropriate host in recent years. Seth MacFarlane was smug, James Franco and Anne Hathaway were a disaster, Billy Crystal seemed past it and Ellen DeGeneres was.well, fine. And so Neil Patrick Harris - a notable stage performer with the likeability factor - is next up to try and replicate the likes of Jon Stewart, Whoopi Goldberg and Crystal of yesteryear. That is, to glide effortlessly in-and-out of the ceremony. To be funny when they need to be. To keep things moving.

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Harris confirmed the gig in a playful cell-phone video in which he crossed "host the Oscars" off his bucket list, which also included "Saw a Lady in Half". 

Shortly afterwards, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences issued a statement. "To work with him on the Oscars is the perfect storm, all of his resources and talent coming together on a global stage," said show producers Craig Zadan and Neil Meron.

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Make no mistake: Harris has all the hallmarks of what should make an excellent Oscars host. He's self-deprecating, funny and professional. He's hosted the Tony's four times and the Emmy's twice - getting stellar reviews for both.

The Oscars will be broadcast live from the Dolby Theatre on February 22, 2015. Currently, Richard Linklater's Boyhood is the favourite to win Best Picture, while Birdman's Michael Keaton and Still Alice's Julianne Moore are favourites to win best actor and best actress respectively.