Will Smith begins to pay a price for slapping Chris Rock
After slapping Chris Rock, the future of Will Smith’s projects are uncertain.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced that Will Smith will face disciplinary actions after he slapped comedian Chris Rock during the 94th annual Academy Awards ceremony.
Resignation from the Academy
Since the event, Will Smith, who took home the award for Best Actor at the event, has dropped his membership from the Academy and checked himself into rehab.
The actor announced last Friday that he would be resigning as a member of the Academy saying that he wanted 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 also said in the statement that he will “accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate.”
The events have left many wondering if the actor will pay lasting consequences for his actions or if it will be a blip following a long career in Hollywood.
The Hollywood Reporter has spoken to some in the industry and so far, many think in the end, the costs to Smith’s career will not last. “It’s not kryptonite yet,” said one executive. Adding later, the exec said that Smith is known for his “accommodating nature” on set and “had never been violent.”
Others believe a comeback is possible, but that agencies and production companies are weary of the optics of taking him on at this time. “I think [studios] would think twice — do they need the aggravation?” said another insider.
What Will Smith projects have been pulled?
To date, “the slap” has put many of the one of Smith’s project on hold.
On Saturday, it was announced that Fast and Loose, a Netflix movie in pre-production was halted. The project in its entirety is up in the air, but it is important to note that there had been challenges before the events at the Oscars, including that the film’s director David Leitch had dropped out of the project.
Similarly, Sony had plans to continue the Bad Boys franchise with a fourth movie and a script had been sent to Smith. Since the events, Sony has chosen to set aside the potential blockbuster.
It’s also unclear what will happen with Emancipation, in which Smith was cast to play a slave-making an escape from Louisiana. The Antoine Fuqua-directed film is currently in post-production and is scheduled to premiere on Apple TV+ in 2022, but no release date has yet been set.