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Brett Ratner out as Oscar producer

In this file photo, Director Brett Ratner arrives

In this file photo, Director Brett Ratner arrives at the MTV Movie Awards in Universal City, Calif. (June 6, 2010) Credit: AP

Huge news for one of TV's biggest events: Brett Ratner has been dumped as Oscar producer. Or, in the euphemism of the trade, he "resigned."

This is certainly a very big deal, and could have an impact on the future participation of Eddie Murphy. Murphy is a Ratner pal and his star on "Tower Heist" so. . .

The statement from the Motion Picture Academy chief, Tom Sherak:

“He did the right thing for the Academy and for himself,” Sherak said. “Words have meaning, and they have consequences. Brett is a good person, but his comments were unacceptable. We all hope this will be an opportunity to raise awareness about the harm that is caused by reckless and insensitive remarks, regardless of the intent.”

 What happened? During a news conference over the weekend promoting said flick,  Ratner flippantly responded to some question that "rehearsal is for fags." He apologized, and the Motion Picture Academy at first seemed to back him. And then. . . the news today.

'Course, it's only logical that the Murphy question would come up, but it would also be a sizeable surprise if he backed out too. But who knows. . .

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