In November, it was revealed that Jimmy Fallon’s popular Tonight Show sketch “Lip Sync Battle” – where celebrities try to out-pantomime each other to pop songs – would become a full-fledged competition series for Spike TV. Lip Sync Battle originators Stephen Merchant, John Krasinski and Fallon all signed on to produce and “perform” on the show, and now a full-time host has been announced: LL Cool J. The rapper and actor will take over microphone duties when the competition arrives on April 2nd.
“Like the rest of the world, I’m a big fan of these battles, but this show is going to bring it to a whole new level,” LL Cool J said in a press release (via Entertainment Weekly). “I’m thrilled to be working with Jimmy Fallon, John Krasinski, Stephen Merchant and the entire team to host the show and can’t wait for the fans at home to join in!”
Lip Sync Battle is the rapper’s second steady TV gig: LL Cool J also appears regularly on NCIS: Los Angeles. He’ll also serve as producer on the competition show, which will film this month in New York.
LL Cool J becomes the third artist to take a hosting gig on a Spike TV show: Common is currently the MC on the furniture-building competition, Framework, and guitarist Dave Navarro serves as host and judge on the tattoo artist contest, Ink Master.
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“Lip sync battling is one of the coolest things happening in pop culture right now and already has a huge fan base thanks to the amazing talent involved,” Viacom Entertainment Group exec Casey Patterson said in a statement when the series was first announced. Saturday Night Live vet Beth McCarthy-Miller will direct Lip-Sync Battle.