Whoopi Goldberg defends Academy's decision not to physically eject Will Smith after Chris Rock slap_freckle removal

Melissa Roberto·5 min readIn this article:
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  • Will SmithWill SmithAmerican actor
  • Chris RockChris RockAmerican comedian, actor, screenwriter, television producer, film producer, and director

Whoopi Goldberg on Thursday defended the film Academy's decision to give Will Smith the option of leaving Sunday's Oscars after his slap of Chris Rock on stage.

Speaking about the controversy on "The View" on Thursday, Goldberg, who serves on the Academy's board of governors, said she understands why Smith was asked to leave the show rather than being told to exit the ceremony.

"I’m going to tell you why he got the option. Picture, well, OK, they come back from break, now if he’s in some sort of state and he’s struggling and they’re trying to get him out the door and it’s still on camera," Goldberg said. "Listen, we work a live show every day and stuff happens and it comes out your mouth or you do something stupid and you’ve got to sit there and deal with it.

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"I can’t imagine what was going on. I wasn’t there. I can’t imagine what was going on back there, but I do know the only person anybody should be focusing on, in my opinion, is Will Smith," Goldberg continued.

Goldberg went on to stress that, while she wasn't present at the awards show, she's heard from others who were there that many in the audience were "stunned" by what went down.

The co-host went on to praise Rock for keeping his composure in the aftermath.

"Let’s talk about that because that’s the best of the Academy," Goldberg said.

Goldberg's co-hosts also recognized her role on the board of governors, to which she replied that she isn't at liberty to speak on behalf of the Academy.

MINNIE DRIVER SAYS CHRIS ROCK ‘WAS ABANDONED BY PRODUCERS AND THE ACADEMY’ AFTER WILL SMITH SLAPPED HIM

"I can’t because I’m not their spokesperson and everything they had to say they’ve said. But there are things that I do know. People said to me, ‘Well, you know, they were running over to greet him’ and someone else is saying, ‘Well, you know, everybody was checking to make sure he wasn’t having a manic moment,’ because that’s not what he’s known for, smacking people. So we’ll see what happens and that’s where I keep saying let us keep in mind that there’s one person responsible for this," she added.

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