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Will Smith news - live: ‘Heartbroken’ actor’s resignation from the Academy accepted by organisation

Best Actor winner resigns from Motion Picture Academy, saying list of those harmed by Oscars slap is “long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones”

Peony Hirwani
Sunday 03 April 2022 08:28 BST
Will Smith punches Chris Rock at the Oscars

Nearly a week after Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, Hollywood is still abuzz with activity, as celebrities weigh in on the incident, while a “formal review” of the incident began at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Now they’ve got something new to talk about: the King Richard star has resigned from the Academy, which puts on the Oscars.

“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,” Smith said in a statement. “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.”

It’s the latest sign of friction between the Hollywood heavyweight and the film group.

Smith was reportedly asked to leave the Oscars after breaking the Academy’s code of conduct, but he refused.

Though Mr Rock has declined to press charges against Mr Smith, on Wednesday, during the sold-out Boston show of his Ego Death tour, Rock finally addressed the altercation and said he was “still processing.”

“I’m still processing what happened, so at some point I’ll talk about that s***,” the comedian also said on stage, adding, “It’ll be serious. It’ll be funny, but right now I’m going to tell some jokes.”

You can follow all the developments about the “slap that was heard around the world” in our live blog below...


Wanda Sykes comments on Smith/Rock drama

Oscars presenter Wanda Sykes has now joined her co-host Amy Schumer and weighed in on the whole Will Smith slap fiasco.

The comedian presented Sunday night’s awards show and has now commented for the first time on what went down between Smith and comedian Chris Rock.

Read her comments below...

Oscars host Wanda Sykes says ‘violence is never the answer’ after Will Smith’s slap

Co-host Amy Schumer also commented on dramatic Oscars moment

Isobel Lewis30 March 2022 18:00

Another figure to speak out on Chris Rock’s joke is interior designer Sheila Bridges, who starred in a 2009 documentary about alopecia titled Good Hair funded by Rock himself.

On Tuesday (29 March), Bridges reshared a clip to social media of her and Rock discussing the condition in an interview at the time.

“While I do not condone violence (or what Will Smith did), I am not completely surprised that Chris Rock got rocked by Will Smith after making the medical condition of @jadapinkettsmith part of his comedic schtick — disrespecting her publicly,” she wrote.

“Shame on you @chrisrock. Didn’t we sit down and talk at length about how painfully humiliating and difficult it is to navigate life as a bald woman in a society that is hair obsessed? As if life isn’t challenging enough out here as an unprotected black woman?”

Isobel Lewis30 March 2022 18:59

Wanda Sykes thinks Will Smith should have been thrown out for ‘gross’ slap

Wanda Sykes has now spoken further on the on-stage altercation, saying that Chris Rock apologised to her and that she thought Will Smith should have been thrown out.

Appearing on Ellen on Wednesday, the Oscars host said that Rock had apologised for stealing her thunder, telling her: “‘It was supposed to be your night... I’m so sorry this is now gonna be about this.’”

You can read Sykes’s full comments below...

Wanda Sykes says Chris Rock apologised to her after being slapped by Will Smith

Host said it was ‘gross’ that Smith wasn’t thrown out

Isobel Lewis30 March 2022 19:33

Chris Rock’s return to the stage

After all the drama of Sunday night, we might get to hear exactly what Chris Rock has to say tonight, as the comedian returns to comedy for the first time.

Rock kicks off his new Ego Death world comedy tour at The Wilbur in Boston on Wednesday night.

The venue’s owner Bill Blumenreich told People that the comic has been in a “great mood” during rehearsals.

“He’s one of the nicest, funniest people you could ever meet in your life,” he said.

Chris Rock tickets for live tour spike after Will Smith Oscars slap

Comedian is touring in the US and the UK for his Ego Death tour

Isobel Lewis30 March 2022 20:58

One star who did miss out on all the on-stage action was Rita Ora, who’s admitted that she was in the bathroom when Will Smith punched Chris Rock.

The singer, who was attending Vanity Fair’s party with boyfriend Taika Waititi, told Australia’s Nova FM that she was “very annoyed” to have missed the event.

Ora and Waititi at the Vanity Fair party
Ora and Waititi at the Vanity Fair party (AFP via Getty Images)

“I suddenly had to go to the bathroom at that point, which I’m very annoyed about,” she said, adding that she was left wondering what on earth was going on on her return.

Isobel Lewis30 March 2022 22:33

Will Smith refused to leave Oscars after Chris Rock slap, Academy says

Will Smith was asked to leave the Oscars after assaulting Chris Rock, but refused, the Academy says.

The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences says it has now begun “disciplinary proceedings” against Smith for his conduct during the ceremony.

“The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy,” the organization said in a new statement.

Read more here:

Will Smith refused to leave Oscars after Chris Rock slap, says Academy

Will Smith broke the Academy’s code of conduct, but did not leave when asked

Nathan Place30 March 2022 23:33

Long week, right guys?

If ever there was a chance to insert the 30 Rock “Lemon, it’s Wednesday” gif, this’d be it...

Isobel Lewis31 March 2022 00:07

Debunking bizarre claims about the Will Smith slap

While the whole Will Smith/Chris Rock drama was caught on camera, some internet conspiracy theorists have falsely claimed that the entire thing was planned or a stunt.

At the link below, we’ve debunked some of the wildest theories claiming that The Slap (trademark) was fake...

The most bizarre Will Smith and Chris Rock theories, debunked

One theory falsely suggested Chris Rock was wearing a ‘cheek pad’, while another claimed Will Smith used his left hand to hit his chest to generate the sound of the slap

Isobel Lewis31 March 2022 01:32

Chris Rock breaks silence on Will Smith Oscars slap

Chris Rock broke his silence over Will Smith hitting him onstage at the Oscars on Sunday (27 March).

The comedian addressed the altercation on Wednesday night (30 March) at the sold-out Boston show of his Ego Death tour, where he said he was “still processing” what happened last weekend.

After the crowd greeted him with a standing ovation, Rock, 57, said: “Let me be all misty and s***“, with tears in his eyes. “I don’t have a bunch of s*** to say about that, so if you came here for that...” Rock added, saying: “I had written a whole show before this weekend.”

“I’m still processing what happened, so at some point I’ll talk about that s***. It’ll be serious. It’ll be funny, but right now I’m going to tell some jokes,” the comedian said.

Maanya Sachdeva has the full story:

Chris Rock breaks silence on Will Smith Oscars slap

Smith struck Rock for joking about the actor’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith at the Academy Awards

Peony Hirwani31 March 2022 04:26

What was the joke Chris Rock made about Jada Pinkett Smith at the Oscars?

Will Smith, who won the Oscar for Best Actor around 15 minutes after the altercation, took issue with a joke Rock made about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith.

Chris Rock was onstage to present the award for Best Documentary when he made a remark about Pinkett Smith’s appearance.

“Jada, I love you. GI Jane 2, can’t wait to see you,” he quipped, appearing to refer to Pinkett Smith’s shaved head. GI Jane was a 1997 American drama film starring Demi Moore in a fictional story about the first woman to undergo special operations training, similar to the US Navy Seals. Moore, who won a Golden Raspberry award for Worst Actress for her performance, had a shaved head for the movie.

Pinkett Smith – who announced last year that she shaved her head after struggling with alopecia – could be seen in the audience together with her husband, rolling her eyes at Rock’s comment.

Roisin O’Connor has the full story:

What was the joke Chris Rock made about Will Smith’s wife Jada?

Comedian looked visibly shocked as Smith told him to ‘keep my wife’s name out your f***ing mouth’ after the altercation

Peony Hirwani31 March 2022 05:20

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