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Will Smith slap: Academy sends letter promising ‘appropriate action’ over Oscars’ incident

The CEO and president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have sent a letter to members concerning the incident between actor Will Smith and comedian Chris Rock at Sunday’s Oscar ceremony.

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The letter, which was obtained by Variety, said the Academy’s leadership was “outraged” over the incident where Smith walked onstage and slapped Rock following a joke Rock made about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.

“Sunday’s telecast of the 94th Oscars was meant to be a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year,” The letter read. “We are upset and outraged that those moments were overshadowed by the unacceptable and harmful behavior on stage by a nominee.”

The letter was signed by Academy president David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson.

“Academy’s Board of Governors will now make a determination on appropriate action for Mr. Smith,” the letter stated.

Below is the letter:

“Dear Members,

Sunday’s telecast of the 94th Oscars was meant to be a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year. We are upset and outraged that those moments were overshadowed by the unacceptable and harmful behavior on stage by a nominee.

“To be clear, we condemn Mr. Smith’s actions that transpired Sunday night.

“As outlined in our bylaws, the Academy’s Board of Governors will now make a determination on appropriate action for Mr. Smith. As governed by California law regarding members of nonprofit organizations like the Academy, and set forth in our Standards of Conduct, this must follow an official process that will take a few weeks.

“We will continue to update you on any developments, but we also ask that you respect your Board, Academy staff and the process as this unfolds so it can work in the considered way it was intended and mandated.

“Please trust that the Board of Governors will conduct this process in a manner that is both expedient and respectful of all involved while maintaining the standards of the Academy.

Thank you,

David Rubin, President

Dawn Hudson, CEO”

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