Academy says response to Will Smith’s Oscar slap was ‘inadequate’

The Academy has admitted its handling of Will Smith’s infamous “slapgate” at the 2022 Oscars was “inadequate”.

The organization, which votes on nominees, winners and hosts for the annual ceremony, said Monday it would be “fully transparent” going forward.

At the organization’s luncheon for this year’s Oscar nominees, Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences President Janet Yang spoke about last year’s disastrous event.

“I’m sure you all remember that we had an unprecedented event at the Oscars,” she said, according to Variety.

“What happened on stage was totally unacceptable and our organization’s response was inadequate.”

“We have learned from this that the Academy must be completely transparent and accountable in our actions, and especially in times of crisis, you must act quickly, compassionately and decisively for ourselves and for our industry,” said she continued.

Will Smith accepts the Best Actor in Leading Role award for ‘King Richard’ at the 94th Academy Awards.
AFP via Getty Images

“You should and can expect nothing less from us in the future.”

During last year’s live broadcast of the Oscars, Smith took to the stage and punched Rock in the face after the comedian made a joke about the actor’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

Rock compared Pinkett Smith – who suffers from alopecia and shaved her head last summer – to Demi Moore’s bald character “GI Jane”, prompting Smith to slap her face.

“Keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth!” Smith then screamed – twice – after returning to his seat.

Janet Yang said the Academy learned that she "must be fully transparent and accountable" in their actions in times of crisis.
Janet Yang said the Academy has learned that it “must be completely transparent and accountable” in its actions in times of crisis.
Getty Images

Less than an hour later, Smith won the Best Actor Oscar for his role in “King Richard” and even received a standing ovation from the audience.

The “Fresh Prince” star seemingly partied carelessly at the Vanity Fair after-party that night, but the aftermath that followed wasn’t all that glamorous.

Smith resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences following outcry over his actions. He was also banned from all academy events for the next 10 years.

The 2023 Oscars will take place on March 12.


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