Actor-writer Billy Crystal will return for the third consecutive year as master of ceremonies at the 64 annual Academy Awards Presentations March 30.

Crystal, who won television's Emmy Award for hosting the 62nd Oscar show, also collected an Emmy that year as one of the show's writers.Said Gilbert Cates, producer of the academy presentations: "The worldwide Oscar audience has welcomed Billy Crystal into their living rooms for the past two years as the ideal host to help celebrate the year in movies."

In other Oscar news:

- Kathy Bates, winner of last year's Oscar for her performance as a crazed, fanatical fan of a novelist in "Misery," was the first star named to be an award presenter at this year's awards.

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Cates said Bates will give the golden statuette to the winner of best actor award during the past year. It will be Bates' first appearance on the show as a presenter.

- Exactly 238 movies met the eligibility requirements for this year's Oscar race, according to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. Last year 223 films qualified.

Feature-length pictures in English or with English subtitles, regardless of country of origin, are required to be publicly exhibited in a theater in Los Angeles County during the 1991 calendar year for a commercial run of at least seven consecutive days.

Foreign language movies, documentaries and short film categories qualify under separate eligibility requirements, including viewing and nomination by special academy committees.

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