UPDATE: Eddie Murphy Exits as Oscar Host… Brian Grazer to Produce?


Eddie Murphy exits Oscar hosting gigUPDATE #2: Deadline is reporting Brian Grazer has been offered and accepted the job as producer and will replace Brett Ratner and is already looking for a new host, though the Academy wants him to try and get Murphy back.

UPDATE: On the producer front, The Hollywood Reporter is reporting Brian Grazer is in discussions with Academy president Tom Sherak to step in to replace Brett Ratner as producer of the 84th Academy Awards.

One day after Brett Ratner resigned as Oscar producer, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences issued a press release today announcing that Eddie Murphy has withdrawn as host of the 84th Academy Awards, which included a statement from Academy president Tom Sherak saying, “I appreciate how Eddie feels about losing his creative partner, Brett Ratner, and we all wish him well,” said Sherak.

A comment from Murphy was also included saying:

“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.”

Rumors already began flying as to who would replace Brett Ratner as producer as Deadline noted they’d heard Scott Sanders (who was eyed before Ratner got the nod) was being looked at along with previous Oscar producers Joe Roth, Adam Shankman and Laurence Mark. Now the Academy has to concern themselves with finding a replacement host.

There is certainly time to do so as the Oscars don’t air until Sunday, February 26, 2012, but planning and prepping for the live presentation can’t be easy and the last thing they want is a show like last year’s.

Previously, Billy Crystal, who has hosted the Oscars eight times, second only to Bob Hope’s 18, told The Hollywood Reporter he got “a little itchy” after a surprise appearance at last year’s show. Now may be the best time to bring him back.

Do you have any suggestions?