Eddie Murphy Backs Out Of Academy Awards Hosting Gig

Eddie Murphy fans looking forward to watching the comedian host the 84th annual Academy Awards are out of luck. Murphy quick the gig less than 24 hours after producer Brett Ratner resigned following an apology for a gay slur he made just days earlier.

Brett Ratner directed Eddie Murphy and Ben Stiller in the comedy Tower Heist and the move by Murphy is a definite show of support for his former boss and current friend.

Speaking about his decision Murphy released the following statement:

“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 went on to add:

“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 entire production falling apart comes after Ratner was asked during a Q&A for Tower Heist if he had actors rehearse before filming for which he said:

“Rehearsing is for Fags.”

Here’s a video report about the fallout :

Here’s the full statement released by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences:

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(November 9, 2011) – Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak announced that Eddie Murphy has withdrawn as host of the 84th Academy Awards.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.

In the meantime here’s a trailer for Tower Heist:

Will you be watching the 84th Annual Academy Awards sans Eddie Murphy? How about heading to theaters for a viewing of Tower Heist?

[Image via Sam Aronov / Shutterstock.com]