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Academy President Cool with Will Smith getting his Oscar engraved: “We Can Arrange”

Janet Yang, president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, said Will Smith is welcome to get an engraved name tag on his Best Actor Oscar statuette, despite being banned from Academy events for a decade after he Chris Rock at last year’s ceremony.

Last month, Smith duetted a video on TikTok instructing viewers to pick up an object and ask what it thought of you. A woman in the first video claimed, “You get an answer in your mind from your intuition.”

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Smith then held up his Oscar statuette, which he won for his performance in King Richardwhich clearly shows that the award was not engraved.

Usually, Oscar winners attend the Governors Ball after the ceremony and get their name tag on the trophy there. But Smith never made it to prom last year – after punching Rock on stage at the awards ceremony – and has since been banned from attending the Oscars and Academy events for the next 10 years.

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During the last episode of The Hollywood Reporter‘s Awards Chatter podcast, Yang shared THRIt’s Scott Feinberg that she thinks Smith should have his name engraved on the Oscar when asked what she’d say if the actor took his name tag.

“He deserved the Oscar,” she continued in the interview published a day before the 95th Oscars. “He should have his name engraved on it. I don’t know if he should come in person. But yes, we can arrange it.”

Explaining what was going through her mind as she witnessed the actor slap the comedian, Yang said, “Honestly, we were numb.”

“Like everyone else, in the beginning when Will walks on stage, we thought, ‘Oh, this is a funny bit. He’s going to pretend to punch him, and then Chris is going to act stunned,'” she added “And then it was like, ‘Okay, that’s over.’ And then he goes back to his seat and then he starts screaming – then of course everyone was like, ‘Oh my God, this is real.’”

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Yang said that before she and Academy CEO Bill Kramer came on board, Rock was apparently asked again about hosting and he declined. Rock spoke about the slapping incident last week on his new comedy special, Chris Rock: Selective Outrage, which was streamed live on Netflix.

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