As debates about the altercation take over social media, Smith shares that he is “embarrassed” by his actions at the Academy Awards.
It is the Academy Awards moment that has taken over timelines and news reports worldwide, and now, Will Smith has re-entered the chat. The 94th Oscars ceremony became a hot topic after a G.I. Jane joke made by Chris Rock about Jada Pinkett Smith became the catalyst for Will Smith to slap Rock onstage. This isn’t the first time Rock has quipped about Jada at the Academy Awards; back in 2016, a time when Jada called for a boycott of the ceremony with the “Oscars So White” movement, Rock joked that the actress wasn’t invited in the first place.
There have been heavy debates and commentary about the incident involving Will and Rock and today (March 28), the King Richard icon has offered an apology to the comedian.
Neilson Barnard / Staff / Getty Images
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive,” wrote Smith. “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.”
“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.”
Smith also apologized to his peers and the Academy, as well as viewers and Venus and Serena’s family. Immediately following the physical confrontation, Smith would go on to win Best Actor for his role in King Richard. Additionally, there seems to be a statement that is allegedly from Chris Rock circulating on social media, but it is unclear if that is actually from him or his team.
Read through Will Smith’s statement in full below.