Will Smith has resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences. On Friday (April 1), the Oscar-winning actor issued another statement accepting “any further consequences the Board deems appropriate” for his “shocking, painful, and inexcusable” behavior at the 94th Academy Awards.
“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,” expressed the decorated actor. “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.”
Smith’s decision comes days after the Academy revealed they’ll be taking disciplinary actions against the actor. The organization issued another statement in acknowledgment of his resignation.
“We have received and accepted Mr. Will Smith’s immediate resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,” said the Academy in light of their ongoing formal review. “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.”
So what does Smith’s resignation mean?
First and foremost, Smith’s resignation allows him to keep his Oscar for Best Actor. As an ex-Academy member, he can no longer place a vote for the Oscars. This also means he can still be nominated for future Academy Awards and attend upcoming ceremonies.
Earlier this week, Chris Rock made his first public appearance since Sunday’s controversial Oscars slap. During his residency and comedy show in Boston, the comedian briefly referenced the incident and admitted he’s still processing the incident.
“How was your weekend?” he asked the audience after being welcomed with a standing ovation. “I don’t have a bunch of sh*t about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I have a whole show I wrote before this weekend. I’m still kind of processing what happened. So, at some point, I’ll talk about that sh*t. And it will be serious and funny.”
Oscars producer Will Packer confirmed with ABC News that the LAPD was prepared to arrest Smith after the shocking moment. The police laid out civil rights for Rock and offered to have the veteran actor arrested for battery.
“I immediately went to the Academy leadership that was on-site and I said: ‘Chris Rock doesn’t want that,’” explained Packer. “I said: ‘Rock has made it clear that he does not want to make a bad situation worse.’”