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Can Oscars Host MacFarlane Fill Billy Crystal’s Shoes?

Seth MacFarlane's humorous and solemn reflections

By Tara MacIsaac
Epoch Times Staff
Created: February 24, 2013 Last Updated: February 25, 2013
Related articles: Arts & Entertainment » Movies & TV
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Actor Billy Crystal holds up nine fingers for his ninth time hosting the Oscars in 2012 at the 2012 Vanity Fair Oscar Party (Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images). Seth MacFarlane, who will host the 2013 Oscars, announces the nominees at the Samuel Goldwyn Theartre on Jan. 10, 2013, in Beverly Hills, California. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

Actor Billy Crystal holds up nine fingers for his ninth time hosting the Oscars in 2012 at the 2012 Vanity Fair Oscar Party (Alberto E. Rodriguez/Getty Images). Seth MacFarlane, who will host the 2013 Oscars, announces the nominees at the Samuel Goldwyn Theartre on Jan. 10, 2013, in Beverly Hills, California. (Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images)

If Seth MacFarlane finds it tough to follow Billy Crystal as Oscars host, it’s no surprise, since Billy Crystal had trouble following his own act.

“Can I be better than I was last year? … That’s a hard thing to do,” Crystal said in an interview with Larry King in December. He was describing the worry he faced during his nine appearances as host of the Academy Awards, newly branded as simply “the Oscars,” including his performance in 2012. But there’s hope for MacFarlane.

Crystal added, “Then I realized I don’t have to.”

The humor that made MacFarlane’s “Family Guy” animated series a pop culture hit may ensure some laughs at the Oscars. MacFarlane tweeted a promise for Oscars night: no “cheap” dirty jokes, only “expensive” dirty jokes.

Billy Crystal told King, “It’s not an easy audience.” The best in the entertainment industry are sitting in the audience.

“Everyone’s in uncomfortable clothes, the lights are on, as I perform I hate seeing the audience,” Crystal said, adding, “It’s always cold.”

MacFarlane—actor, voice actor, animator, comedian, screenwriter, producer, director, and singer—will have his ability to entertain put to the test Sunday night.

His 2012 film, “Ted,” is also up for the award of best original song.

In a cover story for Parade magazine, MacFarlane dropped the humor for a moment of self-reflection: “I wish I was better at taking in how great my life is, but that’s surprisingly elusive. I tend to be very hard on myself and insecure about failing no matter what happens.” 

The comedy skit he posted on his Facebook page in which his father responded to his news of hosting the Oscars with a gift of used bathing shorts, is juxtaposed with a solemn reflection in Parade on what his mother’s reaction would have been if she were still living.

MacFarlane lost his mother to cancer three years ago. He told Parade: “She spoke in superlatives all the time … and we kind of joke that since she had used them all up, what would she have said about [my hosting] the Oscars? But in all seriousness, I would have liked for her to have seen my movie. I would have liked for her to see the Oscars. It would have been nice.”

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