Entertainment

Will Smith Is Banned From the Oscars Ceremony for the Next 10 Years

As many expected, the situation after Will Smith’s infamous Oscars slap continues to escalate — and is churning out real-life consequences for the “King Richard” actor. While it seems like Will Smith will be allowed to keep his Best Actor award, both Netflix and Sony paused the actor’s projects, and now The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is bringing on repercussions of its own.

As you probably already know, Smith infamously slapped comedian Chris Rock on stage at this year’s Oscars ceremony — a reaction to Rock making a joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith. After Rock compared Pinkett Smith to G.I. Jane, Smith got up on stage, slapped the comedian, and said, “keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth.”

Of course, jaws dropped all around the world, and the Academy is not taking the situation lightly.

On Friday, The Academy announced that Smith “shall not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including but not limited to the Academy Awards” for the next 10 years. That means the actor will not be able to attend the Oscars for an entire decade, and will not present the award for Best Actress next year — an Oscars tradition that has gone on since anyone can remember.

The “Seven Pounds” actor already resigned from the Academy days after the ceremony, releasing a statement that read: “change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason,” also saying, “I was out of line and I was wrong.” Smith did say “a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear,” referring to Pinkett Smith’s alopecia, but still said the slap was “shocking, painful and inexcusable.”

In response to Smith’s resignation, the Academy said, “We have received and accepted Mr. Will Smith’s immediate resignation” but would “continue to move forward with our disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith.”

Just a bit more than a week later, and the actor has officially been banned from the Academy — and although Smith stated he “accept[s] and respect[s] the Academy’s decision,” many people are unhappy about it.

A current outcry on social media shows many people believe Smith’s ban is unfair, especially when thinking about how it took the Academy thirty years to expel Roman Polanski after he admitted to statutory rape. One Twitter user aptly said, “Will Smith becoming a supervillain overnight… is a reminder that all that respectability tap-dancing won’t save you when they decide that you’re no longer ‘one of the good ones’.” 

Another user agreed, explaining, “will smith becoming the face of ‘they don’t love us, just what we create’ was not on my 2022 bingo card.” Others chose to remind everyone all the Hollywood stars with allegations against them that are not yet banned from the Oscars, not limited to Kevin Spacey and Casey Affleck. 

One Twitter user said: the “ban they gave Will Smith feels very ‘make a lesson of this Black person.’” 

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