Will Smith Faces Possible Suspension or Expulsion After Slapping Incident

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By Maureen Buccellato  Mar 31, 2022 11:46 AM EST
Will Smith Faces Possible Suspension or Expulsion After Slapping Incident

After the now-infamous slapping incident that took place at the 94th Annual Academy Awards Ceremony on Sunday night, Will Smith faces a potential suspension or expulsion from the Academy.

Below is the full statement released by the Academy:

The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy's Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy.

Consistent with the Academy's Standards of Conduct, as well as California law, Mr. Smith is being provided at least 15 days' notice of a vote regarding his violations and sanctions, and the opportunity to be heard beforehand by means 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 actions at the 94th Oscars were a deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television. Mr. Rock, we apologize to you for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience in that moment. We also apologize to our nominees, guests and viewers for what transpired during what should have been a celebratory event.

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

Will Smith has since apologized to Chris Rock, saying "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." He added, "I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us. I am a work in progress."



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