Chris Rock: Academy Condemns Will Smith’s Actions At 2022 Oscars, Launches Formal Review
Rock had joked about the bald head of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, who has hair loss caused by alopecia.
The Academy, which earlier condemned the act, in latest development says it “condemns the actions of Mr. Smith” and “will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law.”
The group’s standards of conduct policy states it is “categorically opposed to any form of abuse, harassment or discrimination” and expects members to uphold the values “of respect for human dignity, inclusion, and a supportive environment that fosters creativity.”
Violations may result in suspension or expulsion from the group, revocation of Oscars, or loss of eligibility for future awards, according to the policy.
It is rare but not unprecedented for the film academy to revoke membership. Producer Harvey Weinstein was expelled in 2017 after more than three dozen women accused him of sexual assault. Bill Cosby and Roman Polanski were kicked out in 2018.
Cosby was convicted of drugging and sexually assaulting a woman in 2004, though a judge later overturned the conviction.
Polanski admitted to having unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl.
Read Also: Oscars Fashion: Red Carpet In Pictures
Traditionally, the winner of the Best Actor award—which Smith won on Sunday—presents the Best Actress award at the next year’s ceremony.
After Smith hit Rock, there was serious talk of removing him from the ceremony, two insiders familiar with the matter told the New York Times.
However, time was quickly closing in on the best actor award, for which Smith was a frontrunner, and there was concern about further interrupting the show.
A source told Variety that Rock’s joke was not scripted, and another told the outlet producers did not want to create the visual of a “beloved star” being forced out. Shock and confusion may have also played a factor into the delay in taking action, insiders told Variety.
Inside the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday night, comedian Rock, 57, presented an award, taking time to crack a few jokes, including one about Jada Pinkett Smith‘s appearance.
He made a joke about her hair matching Demi Moore’s shaved head in the movie G.I. Jane, which she recently opened up about, revealing it was a result of her years-long struggle with alopecia. Jada, 50, was visibly unamused, rolling her eyes from her seat.
Smith, who was seated with Pinkett Smith close to the stage, walked up to Rock and slapped him in the face, and then yelled at him to “keep my wife’s name out your f**king mouth.”
Soon after, while accepting his Best Actor award for his portrayal of Serena and Venus Williams’ father and tennis coach, Richard Williams in “King Richard”, Smith apologized to his fellow nominees and the Academy, though he didn’t mention Rock.
Afterwards, Sean “Diddy” Combs, who presented an award after the incident and urged Smith and Rock to handle their issues at the after party, told Page Six on Monday the two did just that. “That’s not a problem. That’s over. I can confirm that,” Combs said. “It’s all love, they’re brothers.”
Rock has not yet spoken out since the incident and has declined to press charges against Will Smith.