Using anti-gay language can do serious harm to your Hollywood career, Brett Ratner has discovered. The film director, facing a firestorm of criticism over his use of a gay slur, has resigned as producer of the Oscars telecast, according to the Hollywood Reporter. During a Q&A session at a screening of his new comedy, Tower Heist, last week, Ratner said that "rehearsing is for fags." A Howard Stern interview in which he discussed his sex life added fuel to the fire.
"Words have meaning, and they have consequences. Brett is a good person, but his comments were unacceptable," Academy president Tom Sherak said in a statement. Ratner "did the right thing for the Academy and for himself," he said. It's not known whether Eddie Murphy, who starred in Tower Heist and was recruited by Ratner to host this year's Oscars, will remain involved with the production.