Will Smith has resigned from the Academy

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Academy Award winner Will Smith has resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences from which he faced possible expulsion or suspension after he assaulted Chris Rock during last Sunday’s Oscars, reports Variety magazine.

In his resignation letter, Smith apologises again to Chris Rock and to his fellow nominees and award winners who lost the limelight after it all focused on Smith and his antics on stage, admitting his actions were "“shocking, painful and inexcusable”.

“The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home,” Smith said. “I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken.”

“I want to put the focus back on those who deserve attention for their achievements and allow the Academy to get back to the incredible work it does to support creativity and artistry in film,” he stated, concluding with “change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”

Will Smith has been largely condemned by his assault on Chris Rock over a joke with many suggesting he should've been arrested and escorted out for the ceremony.

A very vocal critic of the incident has been comedian Jim Carrey who suggested  he should’ve been arrested, and if he was Rock, he would’ve sued Smith for $200 million.

Carrey made the comments during an interview with Gayle King in a “CBS Mornings” interview that aired Tuesday where he also took aim at the audience of A-listers who applauded Will Smith when he received the Oscar for Best Actor, calling them “spineless”.

“I was sickened. I was sickened by the standing ovation. Hollywood is just spineless en masse and it really felt like this is a really clear indication that we aren’t the cool club anymore,” Carrey, 60, told King.

“I’d have announced this morning that I was suing Will for $200 million because that video is going to be there forever, it’s going to be ubiquitous,” Carrey claimed.

“That insult is gonna last a very long time,” he continued. “If you want to yell from the audience and show disapproval or say something on Twitter [, that’s OK, but] you do not have the right to walk up onstage and smack somebody in the face ‘cuz they said words.

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It should be noted that on the night of the Oscars, Smith failed to apologise to Chris Rock for the incident, but later posted his apology to him on his Instagram account:

“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable. Jokes at my expense are part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally,” Smith wrote.

“I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. 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.”

“The post continued, “I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us.

I am a work in progress.” concludes Smith.