Academy releases findings of formal review in to Will Smith’s Oscars slap
Wednesday - 30/03/2022 19:51
As the Film Academy begins disciplinary proceedings against Will Smith, bombshell new information from Oscars night has been released.
Will Smith refused to leave the Oscars after slapping Chris Rock onstage on Monday, it has been revealed.
In a bombshell new twist to the saga, the Academy has revealed Smith was asked to vacate the Dolby Theatre after “the deeply shocking, traumatic event”, but the King Richard star stood his ground and went on to receive best actor to a standing ovation.
As reported by Deadline, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences’ Board of Governors have given Smith “15 days’ notice of a vote regarding his violations and sanctions, and the opportunity to be heard beforehand by means of a written response”.
It comes after an initial vote was overwhelmingly in favour of taking the matter further.
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“At the next board meeting on April 18, the Academy may take any disciplinary action, which may include suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions permitted by the Bylaws and Standards of Conduct,” the statement read.
According to Deadline, the Academy could also decide to press charges against Smith, even though Rock declined to file a police report.
Full Academy statement
The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy.
Consistent with the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, as well as California law, Mr. Smith is being provided at least 15 days’ notice of a vote regarding his violations and sanctions, and the opportunity to be heard beforehand by means of a written response. At the next board meeting on April 18, the Academy may take any disciplinary action, which may include suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions permitted by the Bylaws and Standards of Conduct.
Mr. Smith’s actions at the 94th Oscars were a deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television. Mr. Rock, we apologize to you for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience in that moment. We also apologize to our nominees, guests and viewers for what transpired during what should have been a celebratory event.
Things unfolded in a way we could not have anticipated. While we would like to clarify that Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize we could have handled the situation differently.
Demands for Smith to lose Oscar
It comes as many call for Smith to be stripped of his Oscar after slapping comedian Chris Rock on stage in a violent outburst.
Behind the scenes it was just as chaotic, prompting crisis talks within the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which launched a formal review on Tuesday.
Smith is yet to respond to the report.
Academy’s initial response to slap
On Tuesday, the Academy announced it was going to “explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law”.
The news came after reports of a furious top-secret Zoom meeting held after the ceremony in which some members of the Academy demanded the Men In Black star be booted from the prestigious organisation.
On Twitter in the early hours of Monday morning they said: “The Academy does not condone violence of any form.
“Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world.”
Smith, 53, sent Hollywood into a spiral after he stormed the Dolby Theatre stage and slapped Rock after he insulted his wife Jada Pinkett Smith.
Rock was presenting the award for Best Documentary when he mocked Jada’s shaved head and joked live on stage: “Jada, I love you, G. I. Jane 2, can’t wait to see it.”
Matrix actor Pinkett Smith, who first revealed she suffered from hair loss condition alopecia in 2018, rolled her eyes at the sensitive joke — which appeared to push Smith into action.
As horrified stars looked on, Smith leapt to his feet, marched right up to Rock and slapped him hard across the face, before strolling back to his seat in the front row where he yelled, “Leave my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth,” twice as a tense silence gripped the room.
He was filmed clutching his statuette and moving to the music as his 1997 song Get Jiggy Wit It played.
Although Jada, who married Will in 1997, and their children Jaden, 23, and Willow, 19, and Will’s son Trey, 29, from his relationship with Sheree Zampino, attended the bash they were not seen dancing with him.
“My behaviour at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable,” Smith wrote. “Jokes at my expense are a part of the job but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally.
“I would like to publicly apologise to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be.
“There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”
The King Richard actor continued: “I would also like to apologise to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologise to the Williams family and my King Richard family.
“I deeply regret that my behaviour has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us.