Will Smith resigned from the Academy after backlash from slapping Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars.
After storming the Oscars’ stage and slapping comedian Chris Rock, Will Smith announced that he has resigned from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences.
On Wednesday the Academy made a statement saying the Board of Governors “initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct.”
The statement added that 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.”
However, Will has decided to willingly give up his membership.
On Friday Will announced his resignation saying he “will accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate.”
David Rubin, President of the Academy, made a statement on Sunday accepting Smith’s resignation.
“We have received and accepted Mr. Will Smith’s immediate resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,” Rubin said in the statement. “We will continue to move forward with our disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, in advance of our next scheduled board meeting on April 18.”
The Producer of The 2022 Oscar’s First Public Statement
This came after Will Packer, the producer of Sunday night’s Oscars, made his first public statement following the broadcast.
On Monday morning while on Good Morning America Packer said that like everyone else he initially thought the slap was a bit.
“Once I saw Will yelling at the stage with such vitriol, my heart dropped and I just remember thinking, ‘Oh no, oh no. Not like this,’” said Packer. “Chris was keeping his head when everyone else was losing theirs.”
Additionally, Packer added that his co-producer, Shayla Cowan later told him there were conversations on Sunday to “physically remove” Smith. However, according to Packer Rock did not want Smith “physically removed” from the venue.
“I was advocating what Rock wanted in that time, which was not to physically remove Will Smith at that time,” Packer continued. “Because as it has now been explained to me, that was the only option at that point. It has been explained to me that there was a conversation that I was not a part of to ask him to voluntarily leave.”
“My actions at the 94th Academy Awards presentation were shocking, painful, and inexcusable.”
He continued, “The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home.
“I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken.
“I want to put the focus back on those who deserve attention for their achievements and allow the Academy to get back to the incredible work it does to support creativity and artistry in film.
“So, I am resigning from membership in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and will accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate.”
Finally, Will concluded, “Change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”