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BAFTA: Will Smith would have been ‘removed from building’ in UK

Will Smith certainly wouldn’t have been able to stay in the room had his infamous slap had taken place in the U.K. Smith, 53, ran up on the Oscars stage in Los Angeles on Sunday evening during the telecast and hit presenter Chris Rock for making a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett-Smith. But if the altercation that still has everyone talking happened in England at the BAFTAs, Smith would have immediately been escorted out of the building. Executives from British Academy of Film and Television Arts discussed with The Hollywood Reporter their thoughts on the viral moment. “They would be removed from the building,” said Sara Putt, chair of BAFTA’s television committee said, after she was asked what BAFTA would do in a similar circumstance. Smith won later that same night the Academy Award for Best Actor for his work in the drama “King Ricard.” He was even given a standing ovation and his speech ran for almost five minutes. Putt also stated that said individual would not be able to stay and collect any awards. “They would not be in the buildings, so they would not physically be able to collect their award,” she added. Emma Baehr, BAFTA’s executive director of awards and content interjected by noting “we do not tolerate violence of any kind.” Putt chimed in, “It’s just a complete red line for us.” The “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” actor had also scored the statue for best actor in a leading role for “King Richard” at the BAFTAs on March 13. However, he couldn’t attend the ceremony at London’s Royal Albert Hall. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences has decided to take in a full inquiry into Smith and the slap incident. The organization expressed “outraged” over the entertainer’s behavior. “Sunday’s telecast of the 94th Oscars was meant to be a celebration of the many individuals in our community who did incredible work this past year,” the president and CEO of the Academy said in a letter to members obtained by The Hollywood Reporter. “We are upset and outraged that those moments were overshadowed by the unacceptable and harmful behavior on stage by a nominee,” the letter added. The memo was signed by Academy President David Rubin and CEO Dawn Hudson. They also explained that the official process to determine any consequences for the “Hitch” actor, will take a “few weeks.” “As outlined in our bylaws, the Academy’s Board of Governors will now make a determination on appropriate action for Mr. Smith,” the letter said.

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