Will Smith has issued an apology for striking presenter Chris Rock at Sunday’s Academy Awards.
In a post on Instagram on Monday afternoon, Smith called his behavior “unacceptable and inexcusable.”
“Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally,” he wrote. “I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”
Smith added in his post that, “Violence in all forms is poisonous and destructive.”
As you are well aware of by now, Smith on Sunday caused a stir that changed the tone of the Oscars ceremony when he stormed the stage and struck comedian Rock in the face. The moment came after Rock made a joke about Pinkett Smith’s shaved head.
After initially laughing off the joke, Smith likely saw that Jada was disgusted by it, so he decided to act on it. Smith calmly walked back to his seat and could be heard yelling, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth!”
Around 40 minutes later, Smith would take the stage again as a winner. Accepting his best actor award for his role in “King Richard,” a tearful Smith acknowledged the incident but did not offer an apology to Rock.
Smith ended by saying that he hopes the Academy welcomes him back.