It’s been some time since the world witnessed the slap of the century delivered by Will Smith to Chris Rock at the 94th Academy Awards. As expected, both parties have received their share of backlash. However, Will has been on the receiving end of heavy criticisms, including talks of him possibly having to give up his Best Actor Oscar for his portrayal of Richard Williams in the film King Richard due to his actions.
Everyone who’s anyone in Hollywood has had a lot to say about Will possibly returning his Oscar. However, it appears that Will has taken action to resign from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences after the fallout. But, what exactly does it mean? What consequences will the actor have to face? Keep reading to find out.
Resigning from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences comes with a crucial privilege being gone.
Fans are still shocked at the news of Will Smith resigning from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Since the decision is voluntarily, social media users are wondering what consequences Will would have to endure with this move. It turns out that one major privilege has officially been revoked.
According to Variety, Will’s resignation leaves him unable to be a voting member of the Academy that votes on potential nominees. However, the 53-year-old will be able to keep his Best Actor award for King Richard. Not to mention, Will can still get invitations to future award show ceremonies and can still be nominated for future consideration.
Since there was so much speculation around Will having to return his award, fans believe that the star was forced to resign by the powers that be.
Will stated that he accepts all consequences of his actions in his formal resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
Will’s resignation followed the Academy announcing that they’ve "initiated disciplinary proceedings” against the actor on Wednesday, March 30, 2022. In a statement released on Friday, April 1, 2022, Will shared that he fully accepts the consequences for his actions and that his conduct is inexcusable.
“My actions at the 94th Academy Awards presentation were shocking, painful, and inexcusable,” Will said in a statement shared with CNN. “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.”
Will also made it a point to share that he knows his actions took away attention from other actors and that he hopes that the Academy can get back to focusing on their incredible work.
“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,” Will said. “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."
Variety also shared that SAG-AFTRA released a statement after the Oscars incident saying that Will could also face disciplinary action from the guild.
“We have been in contact with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and ABC about this incident and will work to ensure this behavior is appropriately addressed. SAG-AFTRA does not comment on any pending member disciplinary process,” the statement said.
Even though Will made a statement and apologized on March 28, 2022, it appears that the damage is already done. No matter which side you’re on, this situation is very unfortunate. We’d like to wish both Will Smith and Chris Rock all the best.