The Academy ‘condemns’ Will Smith’s actions at the Oscars and says it will launch a formal review

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences said Monday it “condemns” Will Smith’s conduct at the Oscars and is launching a formal review of his conduct, according to the Associated Press. Smith shocked audiences on Sunday when he went on stage and smacked his lips Comedian Chris Rock, who had just made a joke about his wife.

“The Academy condemns the actions of Mr. Smith at last night’s show,” the organization said in a statement seen by the AP. “We have officially begun a formal review of the incident and will review further actions and consequences consistent with our bylaws, standards of conduct and California law.”

The review follows intense public debate about whether Smith’s actions were justified or unjustified. blacksmith could be sanctioned when verification reveals he is to blame, but it’s not yet clear if the Academy would go so far as to take away the Best Actor award he won later that night.

“We’re not going to take that Oscar away from him,” actress Whoopi Goldberg, who sits on the Academy’s board of directors, said Monday. “There will be consequences, I’m sure of that.”

The incident comes after Rock joked that he was looking forward to a sequel to GI Jane starring Jada Pinkett Smith, alluding to her shaved head. Pinkett Smith has spoken publicly about losing her hair to the autoimmune disease alopecia.

2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones - Arrivals
BEVERLY HILLS, CALIFORNIA – MARCH 27: Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith attend the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party Hosted By Radhika Jones at Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts on March 27, 2022 in Beverly Hills, California.

Lionel Hahn/Getty Images


Smith then took to the stage and slapped Rock before returning to his seat and yelling, “Keep my wife’s name out of your damn mouth.”

Later that night, Smith won the Best Actor award for his role as Richard Williams in the biopic King Richard. During his acceptance speech, Smith tearfully apologized to the Academy but not to Rock while delivering a speech on the importance of defending your family.

“I want to apologize to all my fellow candidates,” Smith said. “This is a beautiful moment and I’m not crying because I won an award. It’s not about winning an award for me. It’s about being able to shed a light on everyone. Tim and Trevor and Zack and Saniya and Demi and Aunjanue and the entire cast and crew of ‘King Richard’, Venus and Serena, the entire Williams family. Art imitates life. I look like the crazy dad, just like they said about Richard Williams.”

After the live broadcast, the academy said in a statement that it “does not condone any form of violence”.

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