The multi-talented 41-year-old actor is no stranger to the MC's microphone. He's hosted Broadway's Tony Awards four times, and TV's Primetime Emmy Awards twice — and each appearance featured a number of his killer song and dance routines. Wednesday's announcement that Harris would host Hollywood's biggest night was met with many asking "what took them so long?"
For the uninitiated, here are five reasons Oscar audiences can expect a stellar show.
1. He's the quintessential triple threat
Neil Patrick Harris can sing and dance his heart out for eight minutes straight without missing a beat, or losing his breath. Harris flipped, jumped and cracked jokes through the elaborate opening number for the 2013 Tony Awards — achieving a lengthy standing ovation from the talented audience members.
2. He's not afraid to poke fun at himself
Harris's duelling host duet with Hugh Jackman at the 2011 Tony Awards is evidence of Harris's greatness — and his comedic chops. The four-minute set included a dance-off with the Australian triple threat and a lyrical admission by Harris that he's a serial MC: "Don’t tell me not to host. I simply gotta! Bar mitzvah or a roast it’s me not-cha!"
3. He can do it upside down, and in heels
Harris, who recently finished a Tony-winning run on Broadway in Hedwig and the Angry Inch, has won multiple Emmys for his awards-show broadcasts — and why wouldn't he? How many male hosts can you name who can wriggle in stilettos and dangle over the stage like Spider-Man, but in a fine-fitting suit.
4. He's wowed the Oscars before
Neil Patrick Harris dazzled Hollywood with his Broadway chops at the 2010 Oscars. He opened the show with one of his signature musical numbers, complete with glittering showgirls and his scene-stealing acerbic wit.
5. He knows how to close a show
Not only is Harris a smooth dancer, he's also quick on his feet. The funnyman capped his stellar hosting duties at the 2011 Tonys by rapping a recap of the night's events as the credits rolled. The lyrics were written as the show happened and Harris fearlessly delivered them cold, closing the night with this zinger:
"This ain’t reality TV, this is eight shows a week
Every chorus member that you saw tonight tappin’
Had to make miracles happen
For a chance to see you clappin’
And applauding in the audience. What’s next? Who knows?
Anything goes. Now go see a motherf--king Broadway show."
Judging by his past performances, it looks like television audiences are in for a treat when Harris grabs the mic at the 87th Academy Awards on Feb. 22.