Well, it's official: Eddie Murphy is not going to be hosting the Oscars due to the fact that his boss, Brett Ratner, is a d-bag. And frankly, we're kind of sad, because Murphy seemed like an interesting choice to liven up the often boring ceremony.
But since we believe in making lemonade out of spilt milk, we're looking on the bright side, because this gives us the chance to do something we've wanted to do all along: Pick the next Oscar host ourselves. Hey, considering some of the duds they've had recently (sorry, James Franco!), frankly the Academy can use all the help they can get.
So here they are, our top five picks to host the 2012 Academy Awards -- and once again turn it back into the coolest night of the entertainment year:
Ricky Gervais -- Sure, it's kind of an obvious choice, considering he's been absolutely killing it as host of the Golden Globes for the past two years. But even though he's probably going to be hosting the Globes again this year, let's face it: For Gervais, it's time to move up to the big leagues. And letting Gervais take his swings at the always stuffy and hyper-sensitive Academy? The mind reels at the comic possibilities.
Tina Fey and Amy Poehler -- While it's true that some of the recent experiments in tag team hosting haven't exactly set the movie world on fire, it has to be said that none of the previous hosting duos had nearly the chemistry of Fey and Poehler, who have been making beautiful comedy together for over a decade. Add in the fact that they'd also be writing their own material and it's a stone lock guarantee that we'd get the wittiest Oscar show ever.
Justin Timberlake -- Singing, dancing, acting, hosting "Saturday Night Live:" There's almost nothing that Timberlake hasn't already done in his Hollywood career. Except, that is, host the Oscars. We know he has the charisma and the talent, not to mention the comedy and improvisational skills to pull off the hosting gig. Plus, he's already spent time stumping for more Oscar recognition in the past (see: "The Social Network"), so what better way to boost his profile with Academy voters than by hosting the ceremony itself. It's a win-win for everybody involved -- especially viewers.
Neil Patrick Harris -- Speaking of someone who can do literally anything, Neil Patrick Harris is basically Hollywood's MacGyver: Give him a stage, a basket of hand tools and six ounces of C-4 and he can jury rig a four-star multi-media extravaganza in under five minutes. He's already proven his hosting prowess at the Tony Awards and he has street cred with literally every demographic in the solar system plus some in Alpha Centauri. The question isn't why Neil Patrick Harris, it's why hasn't he hosted the Oscars already?
Russell Brand -- If there's anybody out there who might be able to push things even farther than Ricky Gervais, it's probably Russell Brand. Considering the epic rut the Oscars are in, that's definitely a good thing. Just take a look at this year's MTV Video Music Awards for a glimpse of Brand unleashed; people are still talking about his surprisingly candid tribute to Amy Winehouse. It shows that he has heart -- and the chops to pull off a big time hosting gig like the Oscars.