After Will Smith’s Blow: Chris Rock Turns Down Oscars

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After hitting Will Smith
Chris Rock Rejects Oscars

Outwardly, Chris Rock bears the shame of the slap in the face to colleague Will Smith at this year’s Oscars with composure. However, the move has far-reaching consequences. It is now clear that the comedian will probably no longer appear as a moderator at the gala.

Chris Rock has turned down the Academy’s invitation to host the Oscars ceremony again next year. The American comedian reportedly said this during his weekend show at the Arizona Financial Theater in downtown Phoenix after the public demanded an explanation.

According to Arizona Republic, Rock said the Academy had asked him to conduct the gala in 2005, 2016 and 2022, and in 2023. But after Hollywood star Will Smith hit Rock onstage at the 2022 awards after Rock made fun of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, he decided not to. During the performance, Rock compared resuming moderation to returning to a crime scene. The Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences declined to comment on Rock’s statements, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Will Smith banned from Academy events

The incident happened just as Rock was about to present the Best Documentary Award and less than an hour before Smith was due to receive the Best Actor award for his performance in King Richard.

In April, the Academy Board banned Smith from returning to the Academy Awards or attending other Academy events for the next ten years. A week earlier, Smith had publicly resigned from the Academy.

Earlier this month, newly appointed Academy CEO Bill Kramer stated that the Academy is “committed to hiring a host for the show this year” and is “already talking about it with some key partners.” He also emphasized that the blow will not be the subject of discussion or jokes at the next ceremony. “We want to move forward and have an Oscars that celebrates cinema. That’s our focus right now,” he said.

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