Eddie Murphy Quits Job as Academy Awards Host

Entertainment Nov. 9, 2011 AT 2:10PM
Eddie Murphy Credit: Kevin Winter/NBCUniversal/Getty Images

Next year's Oscar nominations have yet to be announced, but if its behind-the-scenes shakeups are any indication, it's going to be quite the show.

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On Wednesday, Eddie Murphy stepped down as host of the 84th Academy Awards, Us Weekly can confirm. The actor's announcement comes one day after Tower Heist director Brett Ratner resigned as producer of the program.

"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, 50, tells Us in a statement.

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"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."

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Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak respected Murphy's decision, telling Us: "I appreciate how Eddie feels about losing his creative partner, Brett Ratner, and we all wish him well."

Ratner, 42, recently came under fire for saying "rehearsal is for fags" while promoting Tower Heist. The controversial director also spoke openly about his sex life with actress Olivia Munn, who he claimed to "bang a few times" on the set of After the Sunset. (She denied sleeping with him to further her career.)

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