American ace actor, Will Smith has issued an apology for striking presenter and comedian, Chris Rock at the just ended Oscar Academy Awards.
Will Smith in a lengthy post on Instagram, called his behavior “unacceptable and inexcusable”.
“Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally”, Will wrote.
Will then directly apologized to Chris 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”.
Smith emphasized in his post that, “Violence in all forms is poisonous and destructive”. He also rendered an apology to “the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world”, as well as the family of tennis stars, Venus and Serena Williams, and those involved with the film for which he won his best actor award on Sunday, March 27, 2022.
“I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us”, Will wrote. “I am a work in progress”.
Prior to Smith’s apology, the organization behind the Oscars noted in a statement that it “condemns the actions” of Smith.
“We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct, and California law”, the Academy said.
Meanwhile, some have suggested that Rock should also apologize to Jada, but many argue it’s the job of comedians to poke fun at people.
Will Smith’s Apology Enough?
Will Smith and his PR team will be hoping his apology will be enough to salvage his career and his relationship with the Academy and douse the blaze of publicity surrounding Sunday night’s altercation. His statement has been written with extreme care. Will Smith was careful with his language, explaining why he reacted the way he did, without trying to excuse it.
However, his apology does not mean this story is over. Rock will eventually have to comment publicly too. The signs so far suggest he intends to shrug the episode off with good humor, per some reports. The comedian declined to file a police report, and it was reported that he joked backstage after the slap: “That’s the only time you get hit by Muhammad Ali and it doesn’t leave a scratch”, referring to Smith’s role in the boxer’s biopic.
Some have suggested that even when the headlines about the slap eventually start to fade, Sunday’s events will follow those involved for years to come. According to them, it would be impossible for any journalist or chat show host to interview either of them without bringing it up.
Meanwhile, the Academy’s Board of Governors is reportedly set to meet on Wednesday to discuss whether or not any further action should be taken against Smith.
Some have suggested that his Oscar could be revoked, but that is unlikely, according to some reports. Sources noted that Will could still receive a gentler sanction such as having his Academy membership suspended, but that may now be less likely following his apology.