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Cheers, jeers for Oscars' Franco, Hathaway

February 28, 2011 12:00:00 AM PST
The 83rd annual Academy Awards ceremony Sunday utilized a male and a female as co-hosts, a first for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

More than 37.5 million people tuned in to watch the Oscars. That number is down from last year's five-year high.

But hiring younger hosts did help the younger demographic not fall as much in the ratings.

Anne Hathaway and James Franco served as ring leaders.

The duo earned kudos from their boss, producer Bruce Cohen.

"I think Anne and James were amazing," Cohen said.

The two hosts also received a pat on the back from Hugh Jackman, who has been in their shoes before.

"You've done it, it was great," said Jackman enthusiastically.

But the reaction was mixed among fans.

"I like that they're young," said Koreatown resident Evan Patsch. "It was pretty cool."

However, Tash Taylor, visiting from Australia, didn't feel the same.

"I think they just tried too hard," she said.

"I think it kept it lively, something new," countered Meghan Hoffman of New Orleans.

Via Twitter, film critic Roger Ebert also weighed in.

"I hope James Franco does better on the oral exam for his PhD," Ebert said.

And comedian Dane Cook tweeted, "Franco hosting looks like a security guard who doesn't care if you're stealing."

Hathaway said she enjoyed hosting.

"Watching at home when I was a little girl right up to when I was nominated two years ago, the Oscars have always been a joyous experience for me," Hathwaway said.