Will Smith would not leave Sunday night from the Oscars after the infamous Chris Rock slap, according to the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences.
The academy released a statement Wednesday.
“Things unfolded in a way we could not have anticipated,” it said. “While we would like to clarify that Mr. [Will] Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize we could have handled the situation differently.”
Not only did Smith refuse to leave after the incident, the “King Richard” star was awarded Best Actor, gave a speech, and attended an afterparty.
The Los Angeles Police Department said Rock declined to press charges after Smith responded with violence and vulgarity when Rock made a “G.I. Jane 2” joke about Jada Pinkett Smith.
Smith put out an apology Tuesday, but the backlash has not let up.
His apology came after the film academy announced it was launching a formal review into his behavior “and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our bylaws, standards of conduct and California law.”