TAMPA (WFLA) – Will Smith has resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences after slapping Chris Rock during Sunday’s Oscars telecast, according to Variety.
“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,” Smith said. “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.” Smith said in a statement obtained by Variety.
Smith in his statement also acknowledged that his actions overshadowed other winners at the 94th Academy Awards.
“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,” he stated, concluding with “change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”
The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences had met Wednesday to initiate disciplinary proceedings against Smith for violations against the group’s standards of conduct. Smith faced possible suspensions or a possible expulsion.
The academy said in a statement that “Mr. Smith’s actions at the 94th Oscars were a deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television.”
On Monday, Smith issued an apology to Rock, the academy and to viewers, saying “I was out of line and I was wrong.”
Rock publicly addressed the incident for the first time, but only briefly, at the beginning of a standup show Wednesday night in Boston, where he was greeted by a thunderous standing ovation. He said “I’m still kind of processing what happened.”
Smith shocked the theater crowd and viewers at home when he took the stage after Rock joked: “Jada, I love you. ‘G.I. Jane 2,’ can’t wait to see it.”
Pinkett Smith, who suffers from the hair loss condition alopecia, had a closely shaved head similar to that of Demi Moore in the original movie.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.