This Article is From Apr 01, 2022

The Academy Had Zoom Call With Will Smith Before Board Meeting

The Academy also apologised to Chris Rock

The Academy Had Zoom Call With Will Smith Before Board Meeting

Will Smith at the Oscars. (Image courtesy: AFP)


  • Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars
  • He apologised a day later
  • Chris Rock said he is "still processing" what happened
New Delhi:

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences spoke with actor Will Smith on Zoom before an emergency board meeting over his assault on comedian Chris Rock at the Oscars. Variety reports that Will Smith, who won Best Actor shortly after the altercation, apologized to the Academy on the Zoom call. The Academy met to decide disciplinary action against the King Richard star who slapped and swore at Oscar presenter Chris Rock for a joke he made at the expense of Will Smith's wife Jada Pinkett.

A source told Variety that the Zoom call lasted 30 minutes; another source described it as "brief." Variety also reports that Will Smith apologised again to the Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson - he did so in his emotional Oscar speech as well and also in the Instagram post in which he apologised to Chris Rock by name.

It all started when Chris Rock appeared on the stage to present the award for Best Documentary Feature, where he made a joke about Will Smith's wife and actor Jada Pinkett Smith being in "G.I. Jane" because of her shaved head, which triggered the The Pursuit Of Happyness actor, who hit Chris Rock and returned to his seat and yelled, "Keep my wife's name out of your f*****g mouth." Later, while receiving the Best Actor trophy, Will Smith apologised to the Academy and fellow nominees.

Will Smith, however, apologised to Chris Rock in an Instagram post later, where he said that he is "embarrassed" about what he did and an excerpt from his post read, "I would like to publicly apologize 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 Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences started a "formal review" of the situation earlier this week and apologised to Chris Rock for the incident. "Mr Rock, we apologize to you for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience in that moment," the Academy said in a statement, reported news agency AFP. It also said that Will Smith had been asked to leave the Oscars after the slap and refused - doubt has been cast on this claim.

Meanwhile, Chris Rock, while performing at his comedy show at the Wilbur Theater, said, "I don't have a bunch of s*** about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I have a whole show I wrote before this weekend. I'm still kind of processing what happened. So, at some point I'll talk about that shit. And it will be serious and funny," reported  Variety.

(With inputs from AFP)