Remember that Eddie Murphy comeback everyone was so jazzed about? Well, you might want to lower your jazz hands in the wake of this news.
In a statement released by the AMPAS, Eddie Murphy has walked away from his hosting detail. Rather than sum it up for you, here’s the short release in its entirety:
Beverly Hills, CA – Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Tom Sherak announced that Eddie Murphy has withdrawn as host of the 84th Academy Awards.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.
I respect Eddie’s allegiance to Ratner, who was instrumental in this whole “comeback” movement (Tower Heist, hand-picking Murphy to host the Oscars, etc.). But walking away from the high-profile gig seems more than a little misguided. It’s not like Ratner was unfairly driven out. He said some stupid shit and was politely shown the door. Eddie didn’t do anything wrong, so why should he leave?