It will be Murphy's first time hosting the awards ceremony. The 'Shrek' star, who was nominated for an Oscar in 2006 for 'Dreamgirls,' said of his selection, "I am enormously honored to join the great list of past Academy Award hosts from Hope and Carson to Crystal, Martin and Goldberg, among others."
'Rush Hour' director Ratner said that "Eddie is a comedic genius, one of the greatest and most influential live performers ever. With his love of movies, history of crafting unforgettable characters and his iconic performances -- especially on stage -- I know he will bring excitement, spontaneity and tremendous heart to the show Don and I want to produce in February."
Mischer added that "Eddie is a truly ground-breaking performer, whose amazingly diverse array of roles has won him a devoted audience of all ages. His quick wit and charisma will serve him very well as Oscar host."
Many observers had speculated that producers would head back to reliable territory with their choice of hosts, and 'The New York Daily News' reports that comic powerhouses Jerry Seinfeld and Billy Crystal both lobbied hard for the job. However, Ratner -- who directed Murphy in the upcoming crime caper 'Tower Heist' -- is saidto have had only Murphy's name on his wishlist.
But will Murphy be a loose cannon? Back in the day he was renowned for cursing and using profanities in his live act so there could be a good chance that he'll sprinkle the ceremony with a few f-bombs.
The powers behind the Oscars ceremony are hoping that a standout performance from Murphy will help erase the memories of last year's disastrous foray into trying to court the youth demographic. James Franco and Anne Hathaway's awkward, "edgy" stint as co-hosts last year was widely derided by critics and viewers.
Murphy's also got to be hoping that doing well at the Oscars will help rehabilitate his career, which has had numerous peaks and troughs over the last 30 years. For every '48 Hours' or 'Eddie Murphy Delirious' there's been a 'Pluto Nash' or 'Meet Dave' waiting in the wings.
Murphy said he's "looking forward to working with Brett and Don on creating a show that is enjoyable for both the fans at home and for the audience at the Kodak Theatre as we all come together to celebrate and recognize the great film contributions and collaborations from the past year."
'The 84th Annual Academy Awards' will take place at the Kodak theatre in LA on 26 February 2012.