Will Smith will be barred from attending any Oscars events for the next 10 years after the actor slapped Chris Rock during this year’s awards ceremony.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced the decision in an open letter Friday.
“The board has decided, for a period of 10 years from April 8, 2022, Mr. Smith shall not be permitted to attend any academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including but not limited to the Academy Awards,” the letter obtained by NewsNation reads.
During the televised Oscars ceremony, Smith went up on stage and slapped Rock after the comedian made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. He then returned to his seat and angrily shouted “get my wife’s name out your F—ing mouth.”
A short time later, Smith went on to win the best actor award for his role in “King Richard.”
The slap, which happened on live television, sent shock waves throughout the country and unleashed an immediate flurry of online debate and criticism.
Rock declined to file charges against Smith when asked by police.
The Academy, which also received backlash for its handling of the situation, later said that Smith was asked to leave the ceremony after hitting Rock, but refused to do so.
“Things unfolded in a way we could not have anticipated,” the academy said last week. “While we would like to clarify that Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize we could have handled the situation differently.”
However, the Los Angeles Times later reported that Oscars producer Will Packer told Smith, “Officially, we don’t want you to leave. We want you to stay.”
Smith has since apologized for the incident and resigned from the motion picture academy, saying he would accept any further punishment from the organization.
In the letter, the organization’s President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson also thanked Rock for “maintaining his composure under extraordinary circumstances.”
“The 94th Oscars were meant to be a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year’ however, those moments were overshadowed by the unacceptable behavior we saw Mr. Smith exhibit on stage,” the letter reads.