Eddie Murphy Quits Oscars Gig - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Eddie Murphy Quits Oscars Gig After Producer Leaves Over Gay Slur Uproar

HUFFINGTONPOST.COM - Eddie Murphy is no longer hosting the 84th annual Academy Awards.

Following the exit of his good friend and "Tower Heist" director Brett Ratner as producer of the show last night over a series of controversial comments, the Academy announced that Murphy has withdrawn from his hosting duties, which he first took on in September.

"First and foremost I want to say that I completely understand and support each party's decision with regard to a change of producers for this year's Academy Awards ceremony," Murphy said in a statement sent out by the academy. "I was truly looking forward to being a part of the show that our production team and writers were just starting to develop, but I'm sure that the new production team and host will do an equally great job."

The withdrawal caps a tumultuous week for Ratner and the Oscars telecast. Last week, Ratner used a gay slur when asked a question about filmmaking. The director said that "rehearsing is for fags" in a Q&A session following a screening of his new film, "Tower Heist," at L.A.'s Arclight Cinemas. He apologized for the statement after NY Magazine published his remarks. He also made a series of crude statements about actresses Olivia Munn and Lindsay Lohan.

Statement in Full:

Beverly Hills, CA (November 9, 2011) - Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak announced that Eddie Murphy has withdrawn as host of the 84th Academy Awards. "I appreciate how Eddie feels about losing his creative partner, Brett Ratner, and we all wish him well," said Sherak.

Commented Murphy, "First and foremost I want to say that I completely understand and support each party's decision with regard to a change of producers for this year's Academy Awards ceremony. I was truly looking forward to being a part of the show that our production team and writers were just starting to develop, but I'm sure that the new production team and host will do an equally great job."

Academy Awards for outstanding film achievements of 2011 will be presented on Sunday, February 26, 2012, at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland Center®, and televised live by the ABC Television Network. The Oscar® presentation also will be televised live in more than 200 countries worldwide.

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