Academy Has Announced Their Punishment for Will Smith
Everyone was shocked when Will Smith walked on stage at the Oscars and slapped Chris Rock in the face. Rock looked like he didn’t know what to do for a second, but he pulled himself together and continued on with the show despite Smith’s physical and verbal abuse.
Smith was allowed to stay for the rest of the awards show, and he went on to accept an Oscar for Best Actor. He gave his acceptance speech in tears and apologized to the Academy. Before he left the stage, he expressed that he hopes he’ll be invited back.
The world has been patiently waiting to find out what if any punishment Smith will face for his actions. Rock refused to press charges, so the Los Angeles Police Department claimed there was nothing they could do. Smith apologized to Rock and announced his voluntary resignation from the Academy.
Would that be enough? Would the Academy simply accept Smith’s apology and resignation as enough to make up for his actions at the Oscars? No. No they wouldn’t.
Earlier today, the Academy Board held a virtual meeting to decide Smith’s fate. Since he voluntarily resigned, they couldn’t expel him from the Academy; however, that didn’t mean that there weren’t other ways to punish him for his violent behavior.
Watch the video below to hear the Academy’s official decision about how to punish Smith for his actions at the Oscars.
In an official statement, Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson stated, “The Board has decided, for a period of 10 years from April 8, 2022, Mr. Smith shall not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including but not limited to the Academy Awards.”
In the statement, the Board members added that they were “unprepared for the unprecedented,” and they apologized for not taking action during the awards ceremony. They explained that they wish they had used the moment to “set an example.” They realize they “fell short.”
CNN reached out to Smith for a comment about the Academy’s decision. He responded, “I accept and respect the Academy’s decision.”
Even though Smith is no longer part of the Academy and is not allowed to attend Academy events including the Academy Awards, that does not mean that he is not eligible to be nominated for an Oscar in the future.
Do you think the Academy made the right decision? If not, what do you think would have been an appropriate punishment for Smith’s actions?