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Steve Martin, Alec Baldwin to co-host Oscars

— Photos: AP

Steve Martin (left) and Alec Baldwin.

LOS ANGELES: Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin are taking on the Oscars. The two Hollywood veterans will share hosting duties at the 82nd Academy Awards, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said on Tuesday.

Telecast producers Bill Mechanic and Adam Shankman said Martin and Baldwin are “the perfect pair of hosts for the Oscars.” The producers have said they hope to resurrect the Oscars’ ratings and make the show more fun by building on the changes introduced at February’s ceremony, which tinkered with the way awards were presented and featured Broadway-style musical interludes.

Bringing in a pair of hosts, while not unprecedented, continues the theme of change.

The inaugural Oscar ceremony in 1929 was co-hosted by Douglas Fairbanks and William DeMille, then president and vice-president of the film academy. The last time multiple hosts graced the Oscar stage was in 1987, when Chevy Chase, Goldie Hawn and Paul Hogan shared duties.

“In the modern television era, this is the first time there will be two co-hosts on the same stage,” academy spokeswoman Leslie Unger said on Tuesday.

In the biggest change in decades, the academy doubled the number of best-picture nominees from five to 10. — AP

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