Will Smith has resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences after slapping comedian Chris Rock at last Sunday’s Academy Awards, an act he described as “unexplainable”.
Smith, who won the Academy Award for Best Actor in Ceremonysaid in a statement on Friday that “the list of people I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all of whom have face and a global audience at home”.
Following the incident, the Academy’s board of governors met on Wednesday to discuss How should Smith be punished for violating its standards of conduct. The group was criticized for allowing him to stay in the auditorium of the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles after he hit Rock, who made a joke about the hair of his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. She suffers from alopecia areata, a condition that causes hair loss, and has shaved her head.
The Academy on Wednesday said it was considering disciplinary measures against the blacksmith, including possible expulsion or suspension. The group will meet again on this matter on August 18.
Smith on Friday said he had “directly responded to the Academy’s disciplinary hearing notice, and. . .[would]fully accept any and all consequences for my conduct”.
His resignation made it impossible for him to vote for an Oscar, but he could still be nominated.
David Rubin, president of the Academy, said the group had accepted Smith’s resignation and would “continue to proceed with our disciplinary proceedings” ahead of the meeting.