After punching comedian Chris Rock on stage for making fun of his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, Will Smith has been banned from attending any Academy functions, including the Oscars, for ten years.
After meeting in Los Angeles to consider possible punishments, the board of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which organises the Oscars, issued the statement today, April 8.
“The Board has determined that Mr. Smith will not be authorised to attend any Academy events or activities, in person or digitally, for a period of ten years beginning April 8, 2022,” Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson said in a statement on Friday.
“The 94th Academy Awards were supposed to be a celebration of the many people in our community who accomplished tremendous work this year; yet, those moments were overshadowed by the disrespectful and hurtful behaviour we witnessed Mr. Smith demonstrate on stage,” the statement said.
“We did not appropriately handle the issue in the room during our show.” We apologise about this. We had a chance to set an example for our guests, fans, and Academy family throughout the world, but we failed miserably – unprepared for the unprecedented.”
Smith, 53, had previously resigned his membership in the Academy, giving up his voting rights, and stated that he would accept any repercussions before the disciplinary hearing.
The board had planned to meet on April 18, but moved it up to deal with the situation “as soon as possible” after the actor’s departure.