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Eddie Murphy Quits As Host of the Oscars — Why’d He Walk Away?

Theo Wargo, Getty Images

After a tumultuous week that saw director Brett Ratner step down from his post as producer of the 2012 Oscar telecast on Tuesday following controversial comments he made, Eddie Murphy has now announced he will no longer host the ceremony.

Murphy, who stars in Ratner’s new film ‘Tower Heist’ and was the director’s hand-picked choice to host the Academy Awards show, said in a statement:

First and foremost I want to say 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.”

In response, Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences president Tom Sherak said, “I appreciate how Eddie feels about losing his creative partner, Brett Ratner, and we all wish him well.”

The exit of Radner and Murphy means Sherak needs both a new producer and a new host — and since the Academy Awards ceremony will be held February 26, he doesn’t have much time to find them.

[The Los Angeles Times]

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