Talk about a slap – on the wrist.
After announcing a week-long investigation into an unprovoked attack that millions saw in real time – as if it were Watergate! – the academy finally imposed Will Smith’s punishment: Barred from the Oscars for 10 years.
Say it’s not like that!
Is that supposed to hurt? Banned from the longest, most painfully unfunny, and most irrelevant awards show? Can’t Smith present best actress next year?
It would all be funny if it wasn’t so pathetic.
The Academy gave Will Smith a present. It’s not like he’s left out of the after parties. It’s not like he’s banned from doing films or being nominated again.
It’s not like they took his Oscar away from him.
And that’s the real problem. For all their public hand-wringing, the Academy would never do so Will Smith take away the Oscar. Whoopi Goldberg, who sits on the academy’s board of governors, said it clearly and firmly in “The View” the morning after The Slap – it wasn’t going to happen.
Of course it wasn’t. As long as Harvey Weinstein and Roman Polanski still have their Oscarswho really thought the academy would disallow Smith for a slap in the face?
The academy has already set its bar. You can’t hold Smith to any higher standard than a serial rape or drugging and sodomizing a child.
But since Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage on live TV, they had to do it something. Call me crazy, but doesn’t it seem like Hollywood is only interested in doing the right thing when there’s a crowd watching? It’s an institutional occupational hazard, I guess.
Jim Carrey got it right last week when he called Hollywood spineless. As if to prove his point, celebrity bootlicker Gayle King tried to excuse Smith by insisting the moment with Rock had “escalated.”
Carrey cut her off immediately, “It didn’t escalate,” he said. “It came out of nowhere.”
It’s correct. We all saw the same thing. This is not Rashomon.
But King’s useless ruse proves just how sick celebrity culture is.
The idea that rich, famous, powerful people do whatever they want, regardless of the consequences—because consequences almost never come—is the norm, not the exception.
Will Smith is a monster created by Hollywood itself. His enormous, sick ego thrived in her petri dish. He has no clue about real life, decent manners, shame. So really, who are you to judge him? Watch Smith’s grin and swagger as he leaves the stage after beating Rock, so proud of himself, so sure his A-list status meant his peers would celebrate him.
And they did.
My favorite was Trevor Noah, that smug, hypocritical voice of haughty progressivism that shone alongside Big Man Will after The Slap.
Square this circle.
As for Smith, he’ll be fine. He has already issued a modest pie statement in which he “accepts[ing] and respect[ing]’ this verdict. He’ll go to rehab, tear Oprah or Gayle down — in prime time, of course — and sell his childhood trauma and marital troubles in exchange for forgiveness. Time passes and Smith becomes an outsider. His redemption arc will conclude when he presents Best Actress to Shiloh Jolie-Pitt in 2033.
As for the academy? The relief after today’s meeting is not hard to imagine. After all, it’s not the Golden Globes.
https://nypost.com/2022/04/08/academy-never-took-away-harveys-oscar-so-how-could-they-not-let-off-will-smith/ The Academy never took the Oscar away from Harvey – so how could they not let Will Smith go?