Oscars Condemns Will Smith Incident And Launches Inquiry, As Board Member Whoopi Goldberg Says He'll Keep Award

The Academy said it would "explore further action and consequences" after Will slapped Chris Rock on stage at Sunday's awards.

The Academy has launched a formal review into Will Smith’s altercation with Chris Rock at the Oscars, as it condemned his actions on stage at Sunday’s ceremony.

The actor slapped Chris after he made a “G.I. Jane” joke about Will’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith while presenting an award, in an apparent reference to her buzzcut hairstyle. She has previously spoken about her experience of living with alopecia.

After Will walked on to the stage and hit Chris, he told the comic to “leave my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth”.

Having previously issued a short statement saying it did not “condone violence of any form”, the Academy has now gone further by launching an official inquiry.

Will Smith slapped Chris Rock onstage during the 94th Oscars
Will Smith slapped Chris Rock onstage during the 94th Oscars
ROBYN BECK via Getty Images

“The Academy condemns the actions of Mr Smith at last night’s show,” it said on Monday.

“We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our bylaws, standards of conduct and California law.”

The Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) previously said Chris had not pressed charges over the incident, as no report had been filed.

The Oscars’ official review came as Whoopi Goldberg, who is a member of the film academy’s board of governors, said the actor will keep his award, after winning Best Actor for his role in King Richard on Sunday night.

Whoopi Goldberg
Whoopi Goldberg
Jenny Anderson via Getty Images

“We’re not going to take that Oscar from him,” she said on Monday edition os US talk show The View.

“There will be consequences, I’m sure, but I don’t think that’s what they’ll do — particularly because Chris said, ‘Listen, I’m not pressing any charges.’”

Will has since issued a public apology to Chris Rock, saying he was “out of line” and “wrong”.

“I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness,” he said.


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