Though originally scheduled for April 18, the Academy has now pushed up its Board of Governors meeting to discuss reprimands for Will Smith stemming from the slap incident that took place at the 2022 Oscars.
In a letter obtained by Variety, Academy president David Rubin called for the earlier meeting, citing the fact that Smith’s resignation from the prestigious membership meant that they no longer had to abide by the original time frame put in place since “suspension or expulsion are no longer a possibility.”
“The April 18 date was set in accordance with California law and our Standards of Conduct because our agenda included possible suspension or expulsion of Mr. Smith from membership,” the letter read in part. “We were required to provide Mr. Smith notice 15 days prior to the board meeting at which such action might be taken, and also give him the opportunity to provide the board a written statement no less than five days prior to that meeting.”
It continued, “Following Mr. Smith’s resignation of his Academy membership on Friday, April 1, suspension or expulsion are no longer a possibility and the legally prescribed timetable no longer applies. It is in the best interest of all involved for this to be handled in a timely fashion.”
Prior to this move, the Academy previously said the formal review would take weeks, so it’ll be interesting to see how swiftly they come to a decision during Friday’s meeting. In the days since the infamous ordeal, a couple of Smith’s films have been put on the back burner and several people close to the situation have spoken out including Denzel Washington, Oscars show producer Will Packer, and Chris Rock.