Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences officials met with Will Smith on Tuesday over Zoom before its board of governors had an emergency phone call to discuss their inquiry over the actor’s Oscar night attack on Chris Rock.
During the call, Smith, 53, apologized to Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson, and acknowledged there would be consequences for charging Hollywood’s biggest stage and slapping the comic during Sunday night’s ceremony, a source told Variety.
The actor also reportedly tried to explain why he rushed Rock, who had just cracked a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s baldness, which is caused by alopecia.
Rubin and Hudson said they were “outraged” by the attack in a letter they sent to academy members later that day. The letter stated a “formal review” into the incident would take weeks.
After Sunday’s meltdown, Smith received a standing ovation while accepting the Best Actor Oscar for his star turn in the tennis drama “King Richard,” and delivered a rambling speech where he tried to justify his attack moments before.
“Love will make you do crazy things,” he said. “To do what we do, you got to be able to take abuse. You got to be able to have people talk crazy about you. In this business you got to be able to have people disrespecting you. And you got to smile, you got to pretend like that’s okay.”
He apologized to Rock a day later on social media.
The Academy initially said it had asked Smith to leave the gala, a statement that was contradicted by a source who told The Post Oscars producer Will Packer allowed the actor to stay.
The LAPD was prepared to arrest Smith for battery, but Rock declined to press charges, Packer told ABC’s “Good Morning America.”