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The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has signed off on Eddie Murphy as host of its 84th annual Academy Awards, which ABC will broadcast live from the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood on Feb. 26.

Murphy, who shot to fame in the 1980s – first on “Saturday Night Live,” and then in movies like “48 Hrs.” and “Beverly Hills Cop” – was the first choice of producer Brett Ratner, who also directed Murphy in his upcoming film, “Tower Heist.”

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