“The Board has decided, for a period of 10 years beginning April 8, 2022, that Mr. Smith will not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including, but not limited to, the Academy Awards,” the Academy president said. David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson said in a statement on Friday.
Smith issued a quick and concise statement about his ban from the Oscars for the next decade.
“I accept and respect the Academy’s decision,” the actor said in a statement to CNN.
The decision was made after “much debate” about what the consequences of his onstage slap should be, a board member told CNN.
The Academy letter added: “The 94th Oscars were meant to be a celebration of the many people in our community who did incredible work last year, yet those moments were overshadowed by unacceptable behavior and harmful thing we saw Mr. Smith display on stage.” .”
“During our broadcast, we failed to adequately address the situation in the room,” the letter said. “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.”
What happened and what came after
The actor punched Rock when the comedian was onstage hosting the Academy Awards on March 27 after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s very short hair.
Pinkett Smith suffers from hair loss due to alopecia.
Rock has not spoken in depth publicly about the incident.
Days after it happened, Rock appeared at a comedy show in Boston as part of his “Ego Death Tour” and said, “I don’t have a ton of shit about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I had you like a whole show that I wrote before this weekend. And I’m still processing what happened, so at some point I’m going to talk about that shit. And it’s going to be serious and funny, but right now I’m going to tell some jokes.”
CNN has reached out to Rock’s representatives for comment.
Smith also approached the show’s producer, Will Packer, the next morning, apologized and expressed his embarrassment, the producer told “Good Morning America.”
During the interview with “GMA,” Packer said Los Angeles Police Department officers were prepared to arrest Smith for assault, but Rock said he didn’t want that.
In its letter, the Academy offered its “profound gratitude to Mr. Rock for maintaining his composure under extraordinary circumstances.”
“This action we are taking today in response to Will Smith’s behavior is one step toward a larger goal of protecting the safety of our artists and guests, and restoring confidence in the Academy,” the letter concluded. “We also hope that this can begin a time of healing and restoration for everyone involved and impacted.”
CNN’s Brian Stelter, Jason Kravarik and Cheri Mossburg contributed to this report.