The streamer maintains that the decision to cut the show actually had nothing to do with the slapping incident.
The 94th Academy Awards that took place on March 28 has made its mark as the night Will Smith slapped Chris Rock. Smith then went on to win his first Oscar for Best Actor. But the trajectory of the two men's careers has taken a turn in opposite direction following the incident. Rock set off on his comedy show tour across America to sold-out shows. While Smith started facing the consequences of his actions.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS), ruled that Smith will not be allowed to attend any of the events they hold for the next 10 years including the Oscars, for the next 10 years. "I accept and respect the Academy’s decision," he had briefly stated in response. Since then, many of his projects have been put on hold as well.
Academy Bans Will Smith from Oscars for 10 Years https://t.co/jz7E2pI4CY— Variety (@Variety) April 8, 2022
In the latest blow coming Smith's way, This Joka, a stand-up comedy series that was executively produced by him, will not be returning for a second season on Roku. The show featured comics such as Punkie Johnson, Chris Estrada, Baron Vaughn, and special guests like George Wallace and Shawn Wasabi. However, Deadline has reported that the decision to cut the show actually had nothing to do with the slapping incident. But the timing just happens to be at a time Smith is being left out in the cold by other production companies as well.
EXCLUSIVE: ‘This Joka,’ a stand-up comedy series exec produced by Will Smith, will not be returning for a second season on Roku https://t.co/Yx1Tf6tmyz— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) May 2, 2022
Apparently, Roku is said to never have had the option to renew the series which lapsed even before Roku launched the show. The show ended up on Roku from its acquisition of short-form service Quibi, in March. The streamer did not have the chance to analyze its viewing data, in the first place meaning that it was unlikely to return for a second season on the platform. Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith’s Westbrook Studios produced the show with Topgolf Entertainment Group.
The film project Fast and Loose that Smith was a part of was also paused by Netflix following "Slapgate." The film had previously lost its director, David Leitch, to Universal. The streaming site had sent out an urgent call for other directors to take over the project in the wake of his departure but has now decided that it would be better to put the project on hold altogether. Along with this, Sony has also halted work on the much-anticipated Bad Boys 4. Smith was also a part of Apple+’s slave escape drama Emancipation which is already in post-production. But the release date has not been released following the incident.
A fourth Bad Boys movie and a planned Netflix film called Fast and Loose have reportedly been put on hold following the incident where Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars. https://t.co/SAKTuii9ki pic.twitter.com/kZAbx11VuL— IGN (@IGN) April 5, 2022
Following the incident, Smith took the opportunity during his acceptance speech to apologize to Rock and later also released a public apology to Rock on Instagram. "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." he wrote and added. "I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong."