Will Smith has executed a low profile ever since his slapping of Chris Rock during the 94th Academy Awards sparked a nonstop debate across social media. He resigned from the Academy before eventually being banned from attending any of their future events for a decade.
However, the trailer for Smith’s latest movie, “Emancipation,” stirred up a discussion surrounding the possibility of Smith being welcomed back into the Academy’s good graces so that he may receive a nomination or even a win for his new role.
In the new drama directed by “Training Day” director Antoine Fuqua, Smith portrays enslaved man Peter who escapes a Louisiana plantation and makes his way north to join the Union Army.
Smith’s portrayal as Peter has already planted his name amongst Oscar voters, who are reportedly split in whether or not they would consider voting for “Emancipation” to be considered for any of the 95th Academy Awards.
Upon the ”Emancipation” trailer release, many fans urged that Smith be rightfully acknowledged for his performance if it is deserved.
“You can take Will Smith out of the Oscars but you can’t take the talent out of Will Smith. He’s still gonna win all the awards.”
“Y’all want to hate so bad but just know he’s going to knock it out of the park and this is going to be a great movie. His talent and skill aren’t defined by his actions that night and I for sure won’t judge a man that has been great for decades on one unfortunate incident.”
“Can’t keep a good man down. Second Oscar coming.”
Entertainment Weekly reporter Dave Karger told People magazine if “Emancipation” did receive an award, “He [Smith] wouldn’t be able to accept the award in person if he were to win.”
The “King Richard” star joins a growing list of celebs who are banned from the Oscars. The Academy has only banned six people from their membership and participating in the prestigious award show and they include Roman Polanski, Bill Cosby, Adam Kimmel, Harvey Weinstein, and Carmine Caridi who was the first member to be expelled.
Polanski, Cosby, Kimmel, and Weinstein were all banned due to sexual assault allegations made against them. Caridi was removed from the Academy over piracy.
Smith is the only one out of the list of men who received a ban for his actions during the ceremony. While Smith is not the first person to be banned from the Academy, he would be the first person to be nominated while being expelled.