Academy Says Will Smith Was ‘Asked To Leave The Ceremony And Refused’

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The Academy revealed Wednesday that Will Smith was “asked to leave the ceremony and refused” after he walked on stage and struck Chris Rock in the face following the comedian cracking a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head amid her hair loss battle.

“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,” a statement from the The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences read, reported the Hollywood Reporter in a piece published Wednesday.

“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,” the statement added. “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,” the statement continued. “We also apologize to our nominees, guests and viewers for what transpired during what should have been a celebratory event.

The academy closed out its statement by clarifying that the “King Richard” star “was asked to leave the ceremony and refused,” but added that it recognized they “could have handled the situation differently.”

As previously reported by The Daily Wire, the “Men in Black” star’s actions at the 94th Academy Awards are under “formal review.”

Will Smith is under formal review after he walked on stage during the 94th Academy Awards show and slapped Chris Rock in the face after Rock cracked a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair loss.

“The Academy condemns the actions of Mr. Smith at last night’s show,” a spokesperson for the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences shared, according to a report from Variety that was published Monday.

“We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law,” the statement added.

As the Daily Wire reported:

During a segment at the Oscars, the 57-year-old comedian remarked about how no one was wearing a mask in the theater before he turned his attention to Denzel Washington and praised him for his part in the movie “The Tragedy of MacBeth.” The superstar comedian then spotted Will Smith’s wife in the audience and cracked a joke about how Jada was going to be in the next “G.I. Jane” movie.

“Jada, I love ya,” Rock said. “G.I. Jane 2 movie, can’t wait to see it.”

Smith then got up from his seat and struck Rock in the face.

“Oh wow, wow. Will Smith just smacked the s*** outta me,” Rock said.

Smith then repeatedly shouted, “Keep my wife’s name out your f***ing mouth!”

“Wow, dude,” Rock replied. “It was a G.I. Jane joke.”

Later in the show, Smith accepted his first Oscar ever for Best Actor for his role in the film “King Richard.” During his acceptance speech, he apologized to the Academy and to the other nominees, but didn’t appear to apologize to Rock. Late Monday, the actor apologized to the comedian in a lengthy post on Instagram where he admitted that his actions were “out of line” and “wrong.”

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