Will Smith apologizes to Chris Rock for Oscars' slapping incident: 'I was out of line'

Will Smith has publicly apologized to Chris Rock after he slapped the comedian during the Oscars Sunday evening.

"Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive," Smith wrote in part on Instagram before publicly apologizing to Rock. "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 stunned the Dolby Theatre crowd and viewers at home when he took the stage during Rock's remarks after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, Smith's wife. 

Rock turned to Pinkett Smith and said, "Jada, I love you. ‘G.I. Jane 2,’ can’t wait to see it."

The joke touched a nerve. Pinkett Smith, whose head is shaved, has spoken publicly about her alopecia diagnosis. Rock has also previously joked about her. Rock hosted the 2016 Oscars, when some were boycotting the ceremony over the #OscarsSoWhite group of nominees, including the Smiths. Said Rock: "Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties. I wasn’t invited."

Smith strode on stage and slapped the comedian across the face. Back in his seat, Smith twice shouted for Rock to "get my wife’s name out your (expletive) mouth." His words echoed clearly throughout the Dolby, though ABC cut the audio for about 15 seconds. Within an hour, Smith won best actor. During his acceptance speech, Smith apologized to the academy.'

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Smith's statement comes after the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences said it is launching a formal review into the altercation.

In a statement Monday, a spokesperson for the film academy told Variety: "The Academy condemns the actions of Mr. Smith at last night’s show. We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct, and California law."

The academy previously issued a statement on Sunday, stating that it "does not condone violence of any form."

The Associated Press contributed to this report