In an interview on Good Morning America Friday, Academy Awards producer Will Packer revealed that Los Angeles Police were ready to arrest Will Smith for his assault on Chris Rock.
According to Packer, police were poised and ready to remove Smith from the venue. The police told Rock, “We will go get him; we are prepared to get him right now. You can press charges. We can arrest him.”
Packer said that he had encouraged Rock to listen to the officers, “They were laying out the options, and as they were talking, Chris was being very dismissive of those options.”
At a March 30 stand-up show in Boston, Rock told the audience he was “still processing what happened” on stage that night.
The incident took place on live television during the annual broadcast of the renowned awards show, The Oscars.
On Sunday night, Rock cracked a joke onstage about Jada Pinkett Smith’s appearance, which led to her husband storming the stage, slapping Rock, and shouting, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f—ing mouth.”
Late Monday, Will Smith issued a public apology to Chris Rock on Instagram after a day of scrutiny following his assault against the comedian live during the Acadamy Awards.
However, on Wednesday, the Academy of Motion Pictures announced it had launched “disciplinary procedures” against Will Smith.
“The Board of Governors today initiated disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, including inappropriate physical contact, abusive or threatening behavior, and compromising the integrity of the Academy,” the statement read.
“Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize we could have handled the situation differently.”
Smith will receive 15 days’ notice of a vote and be offered the opportunity to be heard via a written response.
The Academy may take action that could include “suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions permitted by the Bylaws and Standards of Conduct.”