Will Smith Apologizes to Chris Rock; Read His Full Statement
Will Smith has had quite a last 24 hours. He won an Oscar, slapped Chris Rock in front of tens of millions of people live on the Academy Awards, and now, about a day later, has issued a public apology for his behavior on the show.
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive,” Smith wrote in a statement on his Instagram account. “My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable. Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally.”
Smith continued with a direct apology to Chris Rock, the Academy, and to the Williams family.
I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness. I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us.
Shortly after the Oscars ended, the LAPD confirmed that Rock had declined to file a police report about the incident involving Smith, which started with a joke Rock made on the Oscars about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair. After Smith struck Rock in the face, he was allowed to return to his seat, and the show continued on. A short while later, Smith won the Best Actor Oscar for his performance in King Richard.
Even with his apology, Smith may not be in the clear. Today, the Academy announced they were launching a “formal review” of the incident that will explore “further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law.”
Smith’s full statement is below: