Appearing on Ellen DeGeneres' daytime talk show, actor George Clooney credited the banks for Brunei's decision not to enforce the death penalty for gay sex.

The oil-rich Southeast Asian nation began enforcing a penal code based on Sharia law on April 3. The laws punish gay sex and adultery with death by stoning.

Clooney was the first celebrity to call for a boycott of the nine hotels owned by Hassanal Bolkiah, the Sultan of Brunei. Two of the properties are located in California. Ellen DeGeneres, Elton John and Billie Jean King joined Clooney. Large corporations such as JPMorgan and Deutsche Bank also backed the boycott.

“When the banks and when the financial institutions started saying 'We're out of the Brunei business,' then [Bolkiah] backed off and said put a moratorium on it,” Clooney said.

“It's not fixed yet but it's a huge step forward after this giant leap backward.”

Clooney said that the boycott “sends a warning shot over to countries like Indonesia and Malaysia who are also considering these laws.”

“That the businesspeople, the big banks, those guys are going to say don't need to get into that business, that's the reason to do it,” he added.