Will Smith should be stripped of his Oscar and banned for hitting comedian Chris Rock, Serena Williams’ half-sister Sabrina Williams has told The U.S. Sun. People, including celebrities, reacted with shock after Smith slapped Rock on stage at the Oscars.
Comedian Rock was on stage to present the award for best documentary feature when he made a joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair loss, which is due to alopecia. Rock said, “Jada, can’t wait for GI Jane 2.” Smith walked up on stage and hit Rock before going back to his seat and shouting: “Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth.”
Smith later apologized during his best actor acceptance speech. Smith won the Best Actor award for his portrayal of Richard Williams in “King Richard”. The actor co-produced and starred in the “King Richard” movie as the father of Venus and Serena Williams. Millions of people who watched the onstage slap have described it as one of the most shocking moments at the Oscars.
King Richard Williams’ estranged daughter Sabrina Williams has also criticized Smith over the incident. “So Will Smith got angry, went overboard, and assaulted another person. Then you just can’t apologize two minutes later, you lost your mind. Wow.
“I agree he should be stripped of the Oscar,” Sabrina Williams told The U.S. Sun. “I have alopecia, I can relate to that because I have alopecia really bad. But it’s not the time or place. If somebody offends you, you let them know in a private setting – ‘Hey, you offended my wife, I did laugh at the joke, but my wife was offended.’
“But just to go on stage in the middle of an event and slap somebody, walk back down, and then yell from your seat. That’s just not appropriate.”
She continued: “If they don’t take the thing from him, they should ban him from attending the event ever again, as that’s just ridiculous.”
Meanwhile, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences last week released a statement condemning Smith’s actions at the Oscars. The organization also revealed that the King Richard actor was asked to leave the ceremony but he refused.
And besides apologizing to Rock, the organization also announced it has opened disciplinary proceedings against Smith, adding that what happened was a “deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television.”
So could Smith be stripped of his Oscar? In Oscars history, only one award has had to be returned. According to the Los Angeles Times, in April 1969, Young Americans won the Best Documentary Feature Award but it was nullified after it was later found that it had first been shown in a theater in October 1967, which made it ineligible for a 1968 award in the documentary category. And even though some big names in the industry like Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein have been kicked out of the Academy, they have still retained their awards.
Still, experts say that Smith could lose his awards per the Academy’s revised rules following the 2017 #MeToo movement. The rules about sanctions state: “May include private reprimand, public reprimand, temporary or permanent loss of privileges to attend and participate in Academy events or activities, temporary or permanent loss of eligibility to receive or hold or revocation of Academy awards or honors, temporary or permanent loss of eligibility to hold Academy service and volunteer roles, or other sanctions that the Academy in its sole discretion may deem appropriate.”