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Kevin Hart steps down as host of 2019 Oscars

Press Trust of India  |  Los Angeles 

on Thursday said he is stepping down as the host of following a controversy over his old homophobic tweets that have resurfaced now.

The 39-year-old was announced as the host of on Tuesday and soon after his old tweets where he cracked anti-gay jokes resurfaced, which led to a huge uproar on

Taking to Twitter, Hart said he has stepped down as he does not want to become a "distraction" at the ceremony. He also apologised to the LGBTQ community for his past "insensitive words".

"I have made the choice to step down from hosting this year's Oscar's....this is because I do not want to be a distraction on a night that should be celebrated by so many amazing talented artists. I sincerely apologize to the LGBTQ community for my insensitive words from my past," the wrote.

"I'm sorry that I hurt people.. I am evolving and want to continue to do so. My goal is to bring people together not tear us apart. Much love and appreciation to the Academy. I hope we can meet again," he added.

According to Buzzfeed, Hart had started deleting his tweets after his announcement as host, but many took screenshots before they were removed.

After the backlash, the actor had posted a video on Instagram, saying he is in great mature place where all I do is spread positivity.

"Guys, I'm almost 40 years old. If you don't believe that people change, grow, evolve as people get older, I don't know what to tell you," Hart said in the video.

"If you want to hold people in a position where they always have to justify their past, then do you. I'm the wrong guy, man. I'm in a great place, a great mature place, where all I do is spread positivity," he added.

In the same post, the actor said he is fine if people want to "search my history or past and anger yourselves with what you find".

"I'm almost 40 years old and I'm in love with the man I am becoming. You LIVE and YOU LEARN & YOU GROW & YOU MATURE. I live to Love... Please take your and put it into something constructive.

"Please... What's understood should never have to be said. I LOVE EVERYBODY... ONCE AGAIN EVERYBODY. If you choose to not believe me then that's on you... Have a beautiful day," the actor said.

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which runs the Academy Awards, has not yet responded on the controversy. It is yet to announce Hart's replacement.

(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

First Published: Fri, December 07 2018. 11:55 IST