Academy initiates disciplinary proceedings against Will Smith – The Hollywood Reporter

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences on Wednesday began ‘disciplinary proceedings’ against Will Smith for his behavior at the Oscars and revealed Smith was asked to leave the show but refused after he slapped Chris Rock on scene during the ceremony.

The actor’s actions were in violation of the Academy’s standards of conduct, “including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior and compromising the integrity of the Academy,” according to a statement released after a meeting of the Board of Governors. Smith could face suspension, expulsion or other penalties if the board chooses to take action at the next meeting scheduled for April 18, according to the statement.

Additionally, Smith will receive 15 days’ notice to vote as well as an opportunity to be heard by way of a written response beforehand.

“Things unfolded in a way that we could not have foreseen,” the Academy said. “Although we would like to clarify that Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize that we could have handled the situation differently.”

The statement did not provide details on who asked Smith to leave; The Hollywood Reporter contacted him for comment. The Academy also apologized directly to Rock in the statement, as well as nominees, guests and viewers.

Rock was presenting Best Documentary Feature at the 2022 Oscars on Sunday when he directed a G.I. Jane joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, who has a shaved head (the actress suffers from alopecia). After Smith took the stage to slap Rock, Smith returned to his seat and yelled at the presenter to get his wife’s name out of his “fucking mouth”. Smith went on to win Best Actor for his performance in King Richard. As he received his very first Oscar, he apologized to the Academy and the other nominees; however, he did not mention Rock.

Officers from the organization’s board of governors held an emergency meeting a day later, and the full board met on Wednesday to discuss the incident.

A board of governors attending Wednesday’s meeting said there was broad support for Smith to be suspended or expelled from the Academy. “I think everyone unanimously thinks what he did was out of control,” the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity.

“People want real consequences. Every member of every branch reaches out to all of their governors,” the source said. “It was an assault – and not just a physical assault, but an assault on the community.”

The source added that the images of Smith and her family celebrating and dancing at the post-Oscar Vanity Fair party as if nothing had happened was a further insult.

THRAwards columnist Scott Feinberg has spoken to numerous Academy members since Sunday’s show, who said the organization should at the very least suspend Smith’s membership, citing the Standards of Conduct of the Academy. group implemented eight weeks after the revelation of Harvey Weinstein’s sexual misdeeds. And almost none said that Smith should return to the Academy Awards next year to carry out the ceremonial tradition that the previous year’s Best Actor awards Best Actress.

Following numerous condemnations, including from the Academy, Smith took to Instagram on Monday to apologize to Rock. “Violence in all its forms is toxic and destructive. My behavior at the Oscars last night was unacceptable and inexcusable.

The Los Angeles Police Department has confirmed THR that Rock refused to press charges.

See below for the Academy’s full statement.

The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for breaching the Academy’s standards of conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior and undermining the integrity of the Academy.

In accordance with the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, as well as California law, Mr. Smith receives at least 15 days’ notice for a vote regarding his violations and penalties, and an opportunity to be heard beforehand through 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 shares at 94and The Oscars were a deeply shocking and traumatic event to witness in person and on television. Mr. Rock, we apologize for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience at this time. We also apologize to our nominees, guests and viewers for what happened during what should have been a celebratory event.

Things happened in a way that we could not have foreseen. Although we would like to clarify that Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize that we could have handled the situation differently.

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