The Late Late Show star James Corden will host the 59th Annual Grammy Awards, replacing longtime MC, LL Cool J. CBS announced the change on Tuesday (Nov. 22), marking an end to the rap star's run of hosting the show for five years from 2012-2016. Tony-winner Corden has a long history in musical theater and has made his singing-with-the-stars "Carpool Karaoke" segment into a viral sensation.
"Thanks to 'Carpool Karaoke,' we've all been on some incredible rides with James, and The Recording Academy couldn't be more excited to welcome his passion and enthusiasm for music, both as an entertainer and a fan, to the Grammy stage on Feb. 12," Recording Academy President CEO Neil Portnow said in a statement. "He's got big shoes to fill after the magnificent run we had with LL Cool J, but James Corden is a commanding, dynamic showman who, we believe, is perfect to host the GRAMMY Awards."
The British comedian whose infectious enthusiasm is a hallmark of his TV persona said, "I am truly honored to be hosting The Grammys next year. It's the biggest, most prestigious award show in music, and I feel incredibly lucky to be part of such an incredible night."
Grammys executive producer Ken Ehrlich added, "James Corden is a captivating host, and I have no doubt that his musical background, personal charm and comedic instincts will resonate with our audience. For the past five years, we've been fortunate to have had LL Cool J host our show, and I trust that James will bring the same professionalism and charisma to Music's Biggest Night."
Corden, who took over The Late Late Show in March 2015, won two Emmy Awards for Outstanding Interactive Program and Outstanding Variety Special earlier this year and his breakthrough "Carpool" skit has racked up nearly 2 billion YouTube views to date. It won't be Corden's first awards gig, as he hosted the Tony Awards in June and has hosted England's BRIT Awards four times.
The 59th Annual GRAMMY Awards are produced by AEG Ehrlich Ventures for The Recording Academy. Ehrlich is executive producer, Louis J. Horvitz is director, Ben Winston is producer, and David Wild and Ehrlich are the writers. The broadcast will air live on Feb. 12, 2017 from the Staples Center in Los Angeles.