Will Smith resigned Friday from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences after he slapped Chris Rock at the Oscar awards last weekend.
“I will fully accept any and all consequences for my conduct,” Smith said in a statement. “My actions at the 94th Academy Awards presentation were shocking, painful, and inexcusable.”
Smith’s resignation comes nearly a week after walking onstage at the Oscars and slapping Chris Rock across the face because he took offense to a joke the comedian made about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
After the slap, Smith shouted at Rock, “Keep my wife’s name out of your (expletive) mouth.”
“The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home,” said Smith.
“I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken. I want to put the focus back on those who deserve attention for their achievements and allow the Academy to get back to the incredible work it does to support creativity and artistry in film.”
The Academy’s board of governors held an emergency meeting this week to begin a formal review process, in which Smith could have faced potential suspension or expulsion.
Despite the resignation, the Academy could still choose to take back Smith’s Oscar for best actor he won for his role in King Richard.
But that is unlikely and has never occurred regarding an issue of conduct.
The Academy’s board meets again April 15 to determine additional consequences as part of its review process.
Smith said at the end of his statement that he “will accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate.”
“Change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”