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Will Smith banned from Oscars ceremonies for 10 years after Rock slap

By NICK GARCIA Published Apr 09, 2022 11:55 am

Will Smith was banned from attending the Academy Awards or Oscars for the next 10 years, after he slapped Chris Rock on stage during this year's ceremony last March 27.

"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 chief executive officer Dawn Hudson said in a statement.

The Board didn't revoke Smith's best actor award for King Richard. As it stands, he's still eligible for future Oscar nominations or wins.

The Academy noted that the 94th Oscars were meant to be "a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year," but were "overshadowed by the unacceptable and harmful behavior" of Smith on stage.

After the fact, Smith said in a statement: “I accept and respect the Academy’s decision.” He resigned from the Academy as a voting member days after the incident.

With Smith's ban, the Academy is breaking the tradition of having the previous year's best actor to present the current year's best actress. The reigning best actress, Jessica Chastain, is still expected to present the next Oscars best actor in 2023.

During the 94th Oscars ceremony, Smith stormed the stage to slap Rock after the comedian joked about the hair of his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, who has alopecia, a hair loss condition.

Rock said he can't wait to see Pinkett Smith in a would-be G.I. Jane 2. In the 1997 movie, lead actress Demi Moore portrayed a military woman with a shaved head.