Almost five months after the infamous Will Smith-Chris Rock Oscar slap controversy, the former’s ex-wife, Sheree Zampino, has come forward asking the fans to forgive him. Although the attack was handled gracefully by Chris Rock and the Academy later took subsequent action, the incident in question rocked the public event and was televised live across the world.
Will Smith remains banned from the Academy Awards for the next 10 years and with the support of his family, has publicly issued several apology statements, both written as well as on video, to Chris Rock. The two are yet to meet publicly.
Will Smith’s Ex-Wife Pleads His Case to the Fans
Sheree Zampino was married to Will Smith for three years from 1992 to 1995 and the former couple shares a son, Trey Smith, 29. Five months after the Oscars controversy, Zampino has publicly spoken up about the issue and has informed the fans via The Daily Mail that she stands in support of her former husband.
“I hope people allow [Will] to be human. I really hope for that because I stand in support of him, we are on good terms. You cannot heal without forgiveness. He gives so generously, he puts love into everything he does, he’s so gracious so kind. He has given us years of laughter. I hope people allow the opportunity for him to be human.”
The actor had been awarded Best Actor (King Richard) at the 94th Academy Awards within an hour of the incident. Sheree Zampino had posted a picture of the pair holding the Oscar, presumably taken after the Award ceremony. In the fallout during the aftermath, Will Smith resigned from the Academy stating that he “betrayed the trust of the Academy” and would “fully accept any and all consequences” for his conduct.
Will Smith Reaches Out to Chris Rock, But To No Avail
Over the following months, Smith, 53, had taken a reprieve from the public fracas over the controversy and followed an Eat-Pray-Love method to gain some inner clarity. He reached out to Chris Rock, fellow actor, and comedian, and apologized by saying,
“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 a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally.
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.
I am a work in progress.”
The actor followed up by issuing a video statement and apologized to the comedian as well as his family. Chris Rock later revealed at one of his shows that he was still processing what happened and would be open to speaking publicly when he was ready. Sources say he has moved on from the incident and doesn’t need to talk.
Source: The Daily Mail