Will Smith’s Oscar has been blamed by ABC, Academy and SAG

The day after Will Smith hit Chris Rock head-on at the 94th Academy Awards on Sunday night, a shock wave from what was called “the slap I heard all over the world” continued to echo throughout Hollywood.

In the wake of the quarrel, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences faced a call from some of its members to punish Smith. Smith won the Leading Actor Award for his performance in his pleasing movie “King Richard”. On Monday, academy leaders held an emergency meeting to discuss an unprecedented outburst of violence aimed at a celebration of film morale for the embarrassed film industry.

In a statement, the organization said, “The Academy condemned Mr Smith’s actions at last night’s show. We will formally launch a formal review of the case and investigate further actions and results in accordance with the Articles of Incorporation and Code of Conduct. . And California law. “

In 2017, the Academy followed Harvey Weinstein’s sexual harassment scandal and established a code of conduct for its members. The code partially states “good sense.” “If the Board finds a member who violates these criteria or whose actions jeopardize the integrity of the Academy, the Board shall the Academy’s Ordinance, including Suspension or Expulsion.”

The Academy’s 54 board of directors will hold regular post-meetings in the weeks following Oscar, but sources say the board will be convened this Wednesday to address Smith’s situation. ..

Late Monday afternoon, Smith apologized to rock, academy, producers, and “everyone looking around the world.”

“All forms of violence are toxic and destructive. My actions at the Academy Awards last night were unacceptable and unforgivable. Joke at my expense is a job,” Smith said in an Instagram feed post. It’s part of, but it’s a joke. Jada’s condition was intolerable to me and I reacted emotionally, “Smith wrote. Of the man I want to be. There is no place of violence in the world of love and kindness. “

Representatives of the Academy and Rock did not respond to requests for further comment by the press time.

A shocking quarrel was triggered when Rock joked at the expense of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, while awarding a documentary film award. Because of alopecia — the star of “GI Jane 2”. In the 1997 movie, Demi Moore played a shaving soldier. With blazing momentum, Smith struck the stage, hitting rock with his open hand, “Keep his wife’s name. Your f-speak out!”

In less than an hour, Smith won the Leading Actor Award for his turn as the father of Venus and Serena Williams. This is the first Oscar award after two previous nominations (Academy members finished voting a week before the ceremony). In a moving speech lasting nearly six minutes, the actor apologized to the Academy and his fellow candidates, expressing his hope that the Academy would “recall me.” Many of the dolbys stood up and cheered, but others didn’t seem to know how to react.

Shortly after the show ended on Sunday, the show’s first producer, Will Packer, vowed to inject more entertainment pizzas into the television broadcast, “Welp, I said it wasn’t boring. # Oscar “tweet.

On Monday, the packer shared much of his feelings in response to a Twitter user who criticized his first reaction as glib. “I don’t feel the need to figure it out for you, but I also don’t care about transparency and say this was a very painful moment for me. At many levels. “

As one of Hollywood’s most important rituals went crazy, many people across Hollywood expressed sadness and disappointment, and ABC executives who aired the television broadcast also addressed a variety of emotions. They praised the show’s musical performances from stars such as Beyonce and Billie Eilish, as well as three female hosts: Regina Hall, Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes.

Network executives were relieved that none of the movies had an Oscar sweep. This tends to predict long nights and encourages viewers to turn off the TV long before the final category is announced. The show’s producers have also found a way to honor the Oscar winners. The category was announced before the prime-time television broadcast and quelled the controversy in the film industry that ignited during the preparatory stages of the show.

Behind the scenes at the 94th Academy Awards, become a packer with Chris Rock.

(Robert Gautier / Los Angeles Times)

After all, the heartwarming “CODA” released by Apple won the Best Film Award, and the streaming company and film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival won the Academy’s Best Film Award for the first time.

Still, even if people close to production have a touching impact that a live award show like Oscar needs to captivate viewers, Smith and Rock’s case is all about the show. He said it was very annoying to people.

Some viewers quickly wondered if it was a step-by-step sketch, but Dolby viewers could confirm that it wasn’t. Executives who are not allowed to speak publicly.

“It was a really weird moment, and I hope that moment didn’t happen for both of those guys, but it’s a moment you can only get on live TV,” the network said. The executive said.

Another person close to Sunday night’s production said, “Everyone was really blind. The joke wasn’t on the prompter, and what Will did wasn’t OK. It just hit everyone’s face and the pun was intended. I didn’t. Really. Everyone was disappointed that it happened because it robbed the spirit of the night. “

Tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams left the Dolby Theater shortly after the television broadcast, avoiding interaction with spectators, including Times reporters.

Family patriarch Richard Williams (Smith described in “King Richard”) individually expressed his disapproval. According to NBC News, Williams’ son Chavoita Lucain issued the following statement from Williams: But unless it’s self-defense, it doesn’t allow anyone to hit others. Williams suffered from the effects of a stroke and did not attend the show.

The Hollywood union SAG-AFTRA, which represents the performers, said in a statement on Monday that the slap case was “unacceptable.”

“SAG-AFTRA focuses on ensuring that members always work in a safe environment. Workplace violence and physical abuse are by no means appropriate and the union condemns such conduct. … we are in contact with the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Science and ABC work to ensure that this case and this action are dealt with appropriately. ”

The average number of viewers on Sunday’s television broadcast was 15.4 million, an increase of 56% from last year’s pandemic-stricken program. Still, the increase in viewership was a relief for the Academy and ABC, but the show is still ranked as the second-lowest rated Oscar. .. Just eight years ago, Oscar attracted more than 40 million viewers.

Criticism of Oscar has become a kind of national bloodsport in recent years as the Academy tackled the # OscarsSoWhite Firestorm and the 2017 Best Work Award, which was first announced on stage by the wrong winner. I did. A nasty episode between Smith and Rock was offered more points for some of the social media that blamed the show and Hollywood.

In the future, the dissonance of criticism is certain to put more pressure on the academy and producer ABC, which hosts the annual event.

“This kind of headline makes it very difficult to attract producers and hosts. It seems attractive to those trying to kill the show. All these dislikes are there and pull. I’m trying to lower it. “

Times staff writers Stephen Batagrio, Amy Kaufman and Anusha Sakowi contributed to this report.

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