LOS ANGELES -- Brett Ratner may have been a bold, unconventional choice to produce the 84th Academy Awards, but the bad boy director went too far for Academy members this time.
And today, the 'Tower Heist' producer stepped down from producer of this year's Oscars telecast.
His latest mess began at the ArcLight in Hollywood, in which he used the offensive term word "fag" at a Q&A following a screening of his new movie, "Tower Heist."
On Monday morning he apologized in a statement, calling it "a dumb way of expressing myself."
That same morning, though, he went on Howard Stern's show on Sirius XM Radio to apologize for recent comments in which he implied a relationship with actress Olivia Munn, who, he told Stern, was just a friend.
But in the process the conversation veered into a discussion of sex, masturbation, cunnilingus ("I'm probably the best in the world at it"), pubic hair, the size of his testicles, the sex habits of Hollywood moguls, condoms (he doesn't like them but now he uses them) and how he sends women to his doctor to be checked for sexually-transmitted diseases "before I go all the way."
Among the girlfriends who needed a checkup before sex, he said, was a much-younger Lindsay Lohan.
The ArcLight Q&A, the graphic Stern appearance and the subsequent fallout are clearly not what the Academy reckoned with when they chose Ratner for his enthusiasm and desire to shake up the Oscar show.
Typically, Oscar producers stay out of the spotlight, and when they give interviews they talk about the show, not their sex lives.
Ratner admitted as much when he called in to the Stern show. "I'm now the producer of the Oscars," he said, "so I really can't talk about all the sex I got when I was young."
Of course, he went on to do exactly that.
On Monday, AMPAS president Tom Sherak released a statement condemning Ratner's gay slur but supporting the director.
"Brett made a very inappropriate remark, a remark that goes against our most important beliefs and the beliefs of the creative community we represent," said Sherak. "He very quickly issued an apology because he knew he had made a mistake.
"We think Brett's apology was sincere and showed that he understood how insensitive he had been. We believe his apology reflects who he really is at heart."
But on Tuesday, Ratner told Sherak he would be stepping down.
"He did the right thing for the Academy and for himself," Sherak said in a statement.
"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."
Exactly who might step into replace Ratner is unclear. "