(CMR) Will Smith will not be allowed to attend the Academy Awards for the next 10 years following his slap of presenter Chris Rock at this year's event, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences said in a letter Friday.
Smith struck Rock as the comedian was on stage presenting at the Academy Awards on March 27 after Rock made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith's hair.
“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,” Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson said in a statement on Friday.
The decision was made during a meeting by the Board of Governors earlier Friday.
The Academy said, “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 and harmful behavior we saw Mr. Smith exhibit on stage.”
“During our telecast, we did not adequately address the situation in the room. For this, we are sorry. This was an opportunity for us to set an example for our guests, viewers and our Academy family around the world, and we fell short — unprepared for the unprecedented,” the Academy added.
“We want to express our deep gratitude to Mr. Rock for maintaining his composure under extraordinary circumstances. We also want to thank our hosts, nominees, presenters, and winners for their poise and grace during our telecast,” the letter continued.
“I accept and respect the academy's decision,” Smith, who resigned from the Academy following the incident, said Friday.
Typically, the previous year's best actor winner presents the current year's best actress award (and the reigning best actress presents to the best actor trophy). With Smith's ban, the Oscars will have to break that tradition.