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LOS ANGELES: The day after Chris Rock was slapped on stage at the 94th Academy Awards, Will Smith issued an apology to the comedian, the academy and viewers at home, saying he was “out of place ” and that his actions are “not indicative”. of the man I want to be.
The fallout from Sunday’s show continued on Monday as the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences condemned Smith’s onstage assault and said it would launch an investigation into it. Later that day, Smith issued a stronger apology than in his best acting acceptance speech, which notably didn’t include an apology to Rock.
“Violence in any form is toxic and destructive,” Smith said. “My behavior at the Oscars last night was unacceptable and inexcusable. Jokes at my expense are part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally. to publicly apologize, Chris. I was out of place and wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no room for violence in a world of love and kindness.
Smith issued an apology to the film academy, broadcast producers, participants, viewers and the Williams family. Smith was honored for his role as Richard Williams, father of Venus and Serena.
“I’m a work in progress,” Smith added.
Earlier on Monday, the film academy said: ‘The Academy condemns the actions of Mr Smith on the show last night. We have officially initiated a formal review around the incident and will explore further actions and consequences in accordance with our statutes, standards of conduct and California law.
The fallout from Smith’s onstage assault continued Monday, as Hollywood and audiences continued to wrestle with a moment that stunned the Dolby Theater crowd and viewers at home, and may have topped all the others — even that standard flub, EnvelopeGate — to Oscar infamy.
Smith shocked the Dolby Theater crowd and viewers at home when he took the stage during Rock’s remarks after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, Smith’s wife. Rock said, “Jada, I love you. “GI Jane 2”, I can’t wait to see it.
The joke struck a chord. Pinkett Smith, whose head is shaved, has spoken publicly about her diagnosis of alopecia. Smith came on stage and slapped Rock in the face. Back in his seat, Smith twice yelled at Rock to “get my wife’s name out of your (expletive) mouth.” His words resonated clearly throughout Dolby, although broadcaster ABC muted the sound for about 15 seconds. Within an hour, Smith won Best Actor. During his acceptance speech, Smith apologized to the academy.
After Sunday night’s performance, the academy issued a statement condemning the violence. The Los Angeles Police Department said Sunday it was aware of the incident but was not pursuing an investigation because the person involved refused to file a police report.
Some members of the academy, such as writer-producer Marshall Herskovitz, called on the academy to take disciplinary action against Smith.
“He disgraced our entire community tonight,” Herskovitz wrote on Twitter.
Academy board member Whoopi Goldberg said on ‘The View’ on Monday: “We’re not going to take that Oscar away from him. There will be consequences, I’m sure.
The Screen Actors Guild also weighed in. The Film, TV and Radio Union called the incident “unacceptable” and said “violence or physical abuse in the workplace is never acceptable”. SAG said he had been in contact with the academy and ABC, and was not commenting on the guild’s disciplinary process.
A sense of disbelief hung in the air at the Dolby Theater after Smith’s assault, and it didn’t dissipate on Monday. Not only was it a hard-to-understand break with decorum on live national television — an incident so dramatic, even movie-like, that many at first assumed it was a bit of a set-up. scene — it seemed totally out of place for one of Hollywood’s most relentless films. optimistic stars.
All of this less than an hour before Smith reached perhaps the climax of his career, winning his first Oscar, for Best Actor.
“In a way, I feel bad for Will Smith too, because I think he let his emotions get the better of him, and it should have been one of the great nights of his life,” he said. said former Oscars host Jimmy Kimmel on Simmons’ Bill Podcast. “And now that is no longer the case. Was there anyone in the world who didn’t like Will Smith an hour ago? Like no one, right? Now he doesn’t have a single comedian friend, that’s for sure.
Some have questioned whether Smith should have been allowed to continue to sit front and center after hitting Rock. Several stars rushed to advise and calm Smith down, including Denzel Washington, Bradley Cooper and Tyler Perry. But the timing was also awkward because the Best Actor category was due to arrive soon after, and Smith had long been considered a lock for the award.
“I know we’re all still processing, but the way casual violence has been normalized tonight by a collective national audience will have consequences we can’t even imagine right now,” Janai Nelson wrote, president and director-advisor of the NAACP. Legal Defense Fund, on Twitter.
The joke that provoked Smith was not part of Rock’s routine during pre-show rehearsals, according to two sources close to the production who were not authorized to speak publicly.