American actor, Will Smith, has resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) as he faced possible expulsion or suspension for slapping Comedian, Chris Rock, on stage at the 94th Oscars Awards.
KanyiDaily had reported how the actor slapped the comedian for making jokes about the shaved head of his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith while presenting awards at the 2022 Oscars.
Although Will Smith has apologized for his action at the event, many Hollywood stakeholders have condemned the assault and also called for his sanction while the actor faced possible expulsion or suspension over the issue.
The Academy’s board of governors had met on Wednesday to discuss possible disciplinary actions against Smith for violating the group’s standards of conduct. The Academy said disciplinary action for Smith could include suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions.
However, in a statement on Friday, April 1, the actor announced his resignation from the Academy, meaning he can no more vote at the Oscars but can keep his statuettes, attend future awards, and be nominated.
Smith described his actions as “shocking, painful and inexcusable” saying that he will accept any additional consequences that the Academy’s Board of Governors deems appropriate.
Will Smith Resigns From Academy
The statement reads, “I have directly responded to the Academy’s disciplinary hearing notice, and I will fully accept any and all consequences for my conduct. My actions at the 94th Academy Awards presentation were shocking, painful, and inexcusable.
“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. Change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”
The Academy Replies Will Smith
In a statement on Friday, Academy president David Rubin stated that AMPAS has accepted Smith’s immediate resignation.
They wrote: “We have received and accepted Mr. Will Smith’s immediate resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
“We will continue to move forward with out disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, in advance of our scheduled board meeting on April 18.”
This comes a few days after Will Smith apologized to Chris Rock, saying that violence is “poisonous and destructive” as he admits he is embarrassed by his behaviour.