The Academy is always looking for the right host to liven up the 3+ hour broadcast. This year there will be 2 hosts: Anne Hathaway and James Franco, the youngest Oscar hosts ever at 28 and 32 respectively. It's not the first time more than one host is used. In the past Bob Hope had several co-hosts including Jimmy Stewart in 1945, and last year Steve Martin and Alec Baldwin shared the stage.
Anne Hathaway helped out 2009 host Hugh Jackman during the opening Oscar number, showing off her musical talents and proving she's more than just a princess. James Franco, on the other hand, is an unusual but welcome choice as co-host such a grand-scale event.
I first noticed Franco when he was in the cast of "Freaks and Geeks" in 1999. He played the lead freak Daniel Desario, the typical bad boy in high school. Franco received widespread acclaim for nailing the title role in the TV movie "James Dean." He has since been in many movies including the "Spider-Man" trilogy, "Milk," "Pineapple Express," "Eat, Pray, Love," and the current "127 Hours," for which he is nominated tonight in the Best Actor category! [He can also be seen doing comedy clips for the "Funny or Die" website, as seen below.]
An amazing fact about James Franco is that he's very studious and focused on his education. He originally dropped out of college as a freshman to begin his acting career. After returning to school, he received his undergraduate degree as an English major in Creative Writing from UCLA in 2008. He then received his Masters in Fine Arts from Columbia University in 2010, and he is the author of a book titled "Palo Alto: Stories." He is currently working on his doctorate in English at Yale University! He has done all this while remaining very active in the movie business.
It's hard to digest that information since I will always remember James as Desario! I cannot wait to see James Franco tonight on the Oscars. You've come a long way Freak!