Will Smith latest news: Ricky Gervais, 50 Cent and more react to Academy ban following Chris Rock Oscars slap

Moment Will Smith slaps Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars

It’s been nearly two weeks since Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars.

The Academy convened yesterday (8 April) to decide on what “consequences” Smith will face for the incident, which saw the actor hit Rock on stage and swear at him after the comedian made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

“Jada, I love you. GI Jane 2, can’t wait to see you,” Rock had joked, in an apparent reference to Pinkett Smith’s shaved head. Pinkett Smith stated last year that she shaved her head after struggling with alopecia.

Smith, who won the Best Actor prize later in the ceremony, walked on stage and struck Rock, before shouting at him: “Keep my wife’s name out your f***ing mouth.”

In a statement issued after the incident, the Academy “condemned” Smith’s actions, and said an investigation was being launched into prospective sanctions.

“The Academy condemns the actions of Mr Smith at last night’s show,” said the organisation. “We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law.”

Smith subsequently resigned from the Academy, but some have speculated that he could be stripped of his Best Actor prize – which he won during this year’s ceremony, for his role in the tennis biopic King Richard.

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Chris Rock has yet to issue any sort of response to the Will Smith verdict – not that he needs to, of course.

The comedian was praised by the Academy in their letter announcing Smith’s ban.

Last week, Rock briefly addressed the incident during a stand-up performance, telling audience members that he was “still processing” what had happened.

Louis Chilton9 April 2022 12:34


For anyone who missed the news last night and is just tuning in now: the Academy has announced its verdict on Will Smith.

The actor will be banned from attending all Academy events, both in-person and virtually, for 10 years.

His Oscar win for King Richard will not be revoked, however, and Smith will still be eligible to win additional Oscars during the period of his ban.

Reactions to the news have inevitably been mixed, but the general feeling on social media seems to be that the decision was a harsher one than many were were expecting.

Louis Chilton9 April 2022 11:11


Smith may be a persona non grata at the Oscars for the next 10 years, but that doesn’t neccessarily mean his film work is going to dry up.

A high-budget AppleTV+ thrilled entitled Emancipation is already in post-production, with the film expect to be released later this year.

Smith was also slated to feature in a third sequel to Bad Boys, as well as a feature for Netflix called Fast and Loose.

The status of these last two projects remains a little more precarious, however, with filming having not yet begun. Some reports have claimed that the Netflix film has been placed “on hold” following Smith’s Oscar incident, but there’s been nothing official on it yet.

Louis Chilton9 April 2022 09:47


Rapper 50 Cent is among those to criticise the punishment doled out to Smith, describing it in a tweet as being “too harsh”.

“Got Damn they doing Will dirty,” he wrote. “This is too harsh so he cant come back till he 63 years old.”

Louis Chilton9 April 2022 08:33


Smith is not the first star to have left the Academy under acrimonious circumstances. Here’s a full list:


Here’s Will Smith’s response to the announcement that he will be banned from the Oscars, as well as other Academy events, for the next ten years:

Kevin Perry9 April 2022 03:36


To recap today’s news, although Will Smith has been banned from the Academy for 10 years, he will still be able to be nominated for future Oscars. Here’s the full story:

Kevin Perry9 April 2022 03:05


Trust Ricky Gervais to have a witty retort to Smith’s ban:

Kevin Perry9 April 2022 02:36


Meanwhile Lizzie Molyneux, co-creater of underrated, Nick Offerman-starring animated sitcom The Great North, highlights the difference in the recent treatment of Smith and comedian Louis CK:

Kevin Perry8 April 2022 23:32


Over on Twitter, Mrs Doubtfire screenwriter Randi Mayem Singer wonders why Will Smith has been handed a lengthier punishment than anybody involved in the 6 January 2021 Capitol riot:

Kevin Perry8 April 2022 22:47