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Will Ellen host

Will Ellen host
Oscars? began fanning speculation that Ellen DeGeneres, praised in all quarters for her job of hosting the recent Emmy Awards, is a major contender to emcee the 2002 Academy Awards. "Ellen did such a good job at the Emmys--even snaring that rare thing, a standing ovation from a cynical Hollywood crowd--that it's inevitable she's now considered a serious candidate," says Tom O'Neil, host of the awards-watching Web site "It doesn't matter that she's not a movie biz insider. Johnny Carson did an ace job hosting the Oscars five times." Academy spokesperson John Pavlik would only say, "At this point, the only sure thing anybody can say is that until she locks down a host, [producer Laura Ziskin] won't be ruling anybody out--or in." As for DeGeneres, her rep says, "I'm sure if she was offered it, she'd do it in a second."

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