American actor Will Smith on Monday (local time) apologized to comedian Chris Rock for hitting him during the Oscar ceremony and said he was "out of line and was embarrassed".
"I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. 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," Smith wrote on Instagram.
"Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behaviour 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," Smith said in his apology. He also apologizes to the Academy for slapping comedian Chris Rock.
"I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us," he wrote.
"I am a work in progress," Smith added. Will Smith slapped comedian Chris Rock onstage after he got miffed at the latter's joke directed at his wife Jada Pinkett Smith. Initially, Smith was laughing but Jada clearly looked affected by the joke. Smith then took to the stage to punch Rock.
A few minutes after the incident, Smith was announced Best Actor at the Oscars. And during his acceptance speech, he apologised for his behaviour.
The 94th Academy Awards took place at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday