The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has responded to the Will Smith-Chris Rock slap episode that has overshadowed everything else that happened at the 94th Academy Awards.
It said in a statement tweeted on its official account: “The Academy does not condone violence of any form.” Then went on to say: “Tonight, we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world.”
‘Variety’ reports that while presenting the best documentary feature award, Rock, a well-regarded comic actor, joked about Will Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, starring in ‘G.I. Jane 2’ because of her bald head. He was referencing the 1997 movie ‘G.I. Jane’ in which Demi Moore appears with a shaved head.
Pinkett Smith has been open about her struggles with alopecia, a medical condition causes aggravated hair loss. Smith reacted to the joke by going up on stage, separated from where he was sitting by a foot, and slapping Rock. He then returned to his seat and shouted, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f****** mouth!”
Smith won Best Actor for ‘King Richard’ following the incident and issued an apology in a tearful acceptance speech. The actor said: “I want to apologise to the Academy. I want to apologise to all my fellow nominees. This is a beautiful moment and I’m not crying for winning an award. It’s not about winning an award for me. It’s about being able to shine a light on all of the people.”
The point to be noted here is that Smith did not apologise to Rock, the target of his wrathful behaviour that has overtaken the coverage of the otherwise carefully crafted event.