Will Smith apologises to Chris Rock with Instagram post for slapping him, Academy launches formal investigation

  • Will Smith has apologised to Chris Rock for slapping him on stage at the Oscars. He said he was embarrassed over his action which, he added, was ‘out of line'.
Will Smith hits Chris Rock as he spoke on stage. (REUTERS)(REUTERS)
Will Smith hits Chris Rock as he spoke on stage. (REUTERS)(REUTERS)
Updated on Mar 29, 2022 07:17 AM IST
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A day after slapping comedian, presenter Chris Rock on stage at the 94th Oscars, Will Smith issued him a public apology on Monday. Taking to Instagram, Will posted a long note saying that he was embarrassed and his actions were 'out of line'. (Also Read | Video shows Will Smith being consoled by Denzel Washington, Bradley Cooper after Chris Rock slap. Watch)

Will Smith's note read, "Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was 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."

"I would like to publicly apologise 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," he continued.

"I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us. I am a work in progress. Sincerely, Will," concluded his note.

On Monday, The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences condemned Will's actions of Sunday night and launched an inquiry into his slapping of Chris. A statement of the film academy, as per news agency AP, read as,“The Academy condemns the actions of Mr Smith at last night’s show. 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.”

Will stunned the Dolby Theatre crowd and viewers at home when he took the stage during Chris' remarks after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, Will's wife. Rock said, “Jada, I love you. GI Jane 2, can’t wait to see it.” Jada, whose head is shaved, has spoken publicly about her alopecia diagnosis. Will went on stage and slapped Chris across the face.

Back in his seat, Will twice shouted for Chris to “get my wife’s name out your (expletive) mouth.” His words echoed clearly throughout the Dolby. Within an hour, Will won the best actor award. During his acceptance speech, he apologised to the academy.

After the show Sunday night, the academy posted a statement condemning the violence. The Los Angeles Police Department said Sunday it was aware of the incident but not pursuing an investigation because the person involved declined to file a police report.

with AP inputs

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Wednesday, June 29, 2022