After beginning the year on a contentious note due to the Oscars slap incident, Will Smith is prepared for his major 2022 release. After slapping presenter Chris Rock on stage during the Oscars ceremony over the latter’s joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, the actor who won the Best Actor Academy Award stunned viewers.
Although it was previously reported that Emancipation was experiencing delays due to the Oscars scandal, the movie is now expected to be released soon, and Smith has already started his press tour to help promote it. The actor recently discussed the Oscars controversy and its effect on the movie’s box office performance, showing that he isn’t trying to avoid it.
According to Variety, when asked what he wanted to say to the audience that wasn’t quite ready for his comeback after the slap incident, Smith responded, “I completely understand if someone is not ready, I would absolutely respect that and allow them their space to not be ready. My deepest concern is my team Antoine has done what I think is the greatest work of his entire career. The people on this team have done some of the best work of their entire careers, and my deepest hope is that my actions don’t penalize my team. At this point, that’s what I’m working for.”
Smith plays runaway slave Peter in the Antoine Fuqua-helmed movie, which is based on a true story. Peter became known to the world as “Whipped Peter” after pictures of the keloid scarring on his back were circulated to demonstrate the brutality of slavery. The movie follows Peter as he makes his way across Louisiana’s swamps to get away from the plantation owners who almost killed him. Both a theatrical and streaming distribution of the movie are planned. Emancipation will have its Apple+ debut on December 9 and its theatrical debut on December 2.