Will Smith Resigns From The Academy

April 2, 2022 / Posted by:

The slap heard around the world has been on our collective minds for what seems like forever. Everyone has gotten involved from Amy “I’m Traumatized” Schumer to Diddy (?). But you know who will no longer be involved in this mess? Will Smith! 2022’s Best Actor Oscar winner has officially resigned from the Academy.

After Will Smith slapped Chris Rock for making fun of his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith’s bald head (Jada has alopecia), he apologized to The Academy and the audience in his Best Actor acceptance speech (but never apologized to Chris Rock and never thanked Jada). Will did apologize to Chris Rock later on Instagram, adding that he’s embarrassed and that “violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive.” As Chris Rock kept mostly quiet about this for now, the Academy announced that they were reviewing The Slap and it would take a few weeks before they decided on a punishment for Will. It seems unlikely that they’ll snatch his Oscar away from him, but “suspension” and “expulsion” were on the table. However, Will beat them to the punch, or beat them to The Slap, I should say by announcing last night that he’s pulling some “You can’t fire me, I QUIT!” shit. Here’s his statement, via People:

“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.”

David Rubin, the President of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, responded to Will’s resignation and said that they accept it and will continue with their disciplinary proceedings against him.

“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 our disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, in advance of our next scheduled board meeting on April 18.”

By leaving the Academy, Will has been stripped of his ability to vote on Oscar nominations. (Who will vote for Morbius now?!) However, he can still be eligible for future Oscars. I guess after the apologies and threats of being charged or ousted, Will just took the hit (ha!) and resigned himself. Although he’s now officially out of the Academy, Will has cemented himself into Hollywood history by not only nabbing that Best Actor Oscar but also giving that boring ceremony a stunt story to last a lifetime. Now that’s what I call leaving your mark!

Pic: INSTAR

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