Oscars Promises A “Crisis Team” To Prevent More On-Stage Slaps

While viewers would normally be talking about how CODA won “Best Picture” at the 2022 94th Academy Awards, talk of an on-stage incident drowned out a lot of the buzz. During his presentation, Chris Rock made a ‘GI Jane’ joke aimed at ‘The Matrix Reloaded’ star Jada Pinkett Smith and was promptly slapped by her husband, ‘King Richard’ star Will Smith.

The incident had a reverberating effect, leading the Oscars to ban Will Smith from the Academy Awards for ten years and strip him of his voting power, prompting Smith to resign.

Deadline reports that to prevent another event that some have called “Slapgate” or “The Slappening,” the Academy has formed a “crisis team” to help secure the event.

Movie Academy CEO Bill Kramer told Time magazine, “… we have a whole crisis team, something we’ve never had before, and many plans in place. We’ve run many scenarios. So it is our hope that we will be prepared for anything that we may not anticipate right now but that we’re planning for just in case it does happen.”

“Because of last year, we’ve opened our minds to the many things that can happen at the Oscars. But these crisis plans — the crisis communication teams and structures we have in place — allow us to say, ‘This is the group that we have to gather very quickly. This is how we all come together. This is the spokesperson. This will be the statement.’ And obviously, depending on the specifics of the crisis, and let’s hope something doesn’t happen and we never have to use these, but we already have frameworks in place that we can modify,” he continued.

Smith apologized for the incident the next day, but the fallout continues to affect him and his film career. Supporters rallied around Chris Rock who launched a stand-up comedy tour shortly afterward.

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Jacob Airey

Jacob Airey is an author, nerd, movie reviewer, and pop culture critic. He started this website in 2012 where he covers a vast variety of topics including film, TV, anime, and faith. He also hosts the YouTube vidcast StudioJake.

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