Will Smith Reveals His ‘Biggest Concern’ For First Film Since Oscar Slap

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Leena Nasir Entertainment Reporter
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Will Smith is afraid everyone attached to his upcoming movie may suffer as a result of the now-infamous Oscar slap.

Smith says he “completely” understands if audiences aren’t ready to see him back in action in upcoming slavery drama “Emancipation.” But that’s not his biggest concern. “My deepest hope is my actions don’t penalize my team,” Smith told “Good Day DC.” In an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Smith said he fears that others who worked on the film will be penalized for his shortcomings.

The actor draw criticism when he slapped presenter Chris Rock at the Academy Awards in March and screamed at him to “[k]eep my wife’s name out your fuckin’ mouth” after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s baldness. Smith remained in the ballroom for the remainder of the ceremony and accepted the award for Best Actor for his performance in “King Richard.” He apologized for his actions the following day, resigned his membership in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and has been banned from attending Academy events for the next 10 years.

“I completely understand that, if someone is not ready. I would absolutely respect that and allow them their space to not be ready,” Smith told “Good Day DC.”

Smith made specific reference to director Antoine Fuqua and cinematographer Robert Richardson, as well as the film’s production designer, its costume designer and his co-star, Charmaine Bingwa, saying they all deserved credit for their hard work and incredible accomplishments.
“The people on this team have done some of the best work of their entire careers, and my deepest hope is that my actions don’t penalize my team,” Smith said.

“So at this point, that’s what I’m working for,” he continued. “That’s what I’m hoping for. I’m hoping that the material, the power of the film, the timeliness of the story — I’m hoping that the good that can be done — will open people’s hearts at a minimum to see and recognize and support the incredible artists in and around this film.”

Fuqua admitted there were conversations surrounding the possibility of “the movie not coming out” after the Oscar slap. Fuqua said what transpired between Smith and Rock was “an unfortunate event, and I hope we can move forward and get past it,” according to The Hollywood Reporter.