At the Oscars, Hollywood actor Will Smith walked up to the stage and slapped actor-comedian Chris Rock, taking the entire audience as well as live viewers by surprise. Rock had joked about Will Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s health condition. The producers of the Academy Awards say that the police were all set to arrest Will Smith for the slap.
According to a report in ABC Television, Will Packer, the producer, said that he was sitting with Rock when the officers had come to speak to him. “They were saying, you know, this is battery.... They said we will go get him, we are prepared, we are prepared to get him right now, you can press charges, we can arrest him, you have -- they were laying out the options," he said, adding, “Chris was -- he was being very dismissive of those options. He was like, 'I'm fine.”
In fact, the police officers told him their options regarding consequences for Will Smith and the actor-comedian just refused. “’You know, would you like us to take any action?' and he said 'No'," added Packer. Police in Los Angeles said Sunday that Rock had declined to file a report.
An hour later, Will Smith was also awarded the best actor Oscar for his role in ‘King Richard’. However, according to reports, the academy awards organisers claimed that they had also asked Wil Smith to leave the awards, right after he slapped Rock, but he had refused to do so. However, there is a conflicting report which also states that Packer asked him to stay on. But Packer claims that he hadn’t spoken to Will Smith at the time.
The Academy is yet to decide on a consequence for the actor. “The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Will Smith for violations of the Academy's Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy,” a statement stated, adding, “The Academy may take any disciplinary action, which may include suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions."