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Upcoming Will Smith Projects Paused Following Oscars Slap

Production on Bad Boys 4 and the Netflix film Fast and Loose have been put on the back burner

will smith projects pause after slap fast and loose bad boys 4
Will Smith, Photo by ROBYN BECK/AFP via Getty Images
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    Production on several of Will Smith’s upcoming films has been paused following his onstage slap of Chris Rock at the Oscars, The Hollywood Reporter notes.

    One project now on the back burner is Netflix’s Fast and Loose. Smith was set to play a crime boss who loses his memory. As he tries to piece together his old identity, he finds clues that he lived a double life as a wealthy crime lord and an impoverished CIA operative.

    Deadpool 2’s David Leitch was attached to direct, but one week before the Academy Awards he moved on to the Ryan Gosling vehicle Fall Guy. THR reports that Netflix had put out an urgent call for an experienced director to replace him, but following the slap, Fast and Loose has no director and a suddenly controversial star. Currently, it’s not moving forward.

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    Besides that, production on Bad Boys 4 has been slowed down. Smith had received about 40 pages of the script prior to the Oscars, but according to a source familiar with the project, Sony will now take things slow on Bad Boys 4.

    Smith has already wrapped filming on the slave drama Emancipation for Apple TV+, and that project is slated for a 2022 release, exact date to be determined. A representative for Apple TV+ declined to comment. It would be a surprise to see them shelve the project entirely, but they may wait a little longer than they initially planned to announce a release date, the better to allow the slap discourse to die down.

    Smith apologized for his physical outburst several times, first during his Best Actor acceptance speech, and again in a statement several days later. He wrote, “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.” He apologized again when he resigned from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, saying he, “will accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate.”

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    Hosts Amy Schumer and Wanda Sykes both said that they felt “traumatized,” by the incident, while Rock himself said he’s “still kind of processing what happened.” If you’d like, you can check out our timeline of the feud between Rock and Smith now.

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