Apple Could Still Release Will Smith’s New Movie For Next Year’s Oscar Race

The sting of Will SmithThe Oscar slap could wear off fast enough for the actor to make another bid for glory at next year’s ceremony.

As the ‘King Richard’ star continues to deal with the fallout from her attack on comedian Chris Rock at the Oscars, The New York Times reports that Apple is still planning to release its next film “Emancipation” by the end of the year so that it can be eligible for the next awards season.

Smith has wrapped filming on “Training Day” director Antoine Fuqua’s upcoming Civil War epic, which the company acquired for the record sum of 120 million dollars a month before the Oscars incident.

While earlier reports claimed the film’s release was postponed to 2023The Times revealed that there have been “discussions within Apple to release ‘Emancipation’ by the end of the year, which would make it eligible for awards”, citing three unnamed sources involved in the film.

Besides the hefty price tag, the studio is believed to be confident the film could still be an awards contender, given what Times sources called the “overwhelmingly positive” reactions at early screenings, particularly around the “volcanic” performance. ” by Smith. In a post-film commentary, audience members said they were “not deterred” by the actor’s outburst at the Oscars.

“Emancipation” stars Smith as Peter, a runaway slave who escapes from a Louisiana plantation and eventually joins the Union Army during the Civil War. The movie is inspired by real photosincluding one known as “The scourged backwhich shows a man’s whipping scars during a medical examination. The image gained wide circulation after appearing in a Harper’s Weekly article published in 1863 and helped expose the truth about the brutality of slavery around the world.

Fuqua has describes the project as “the best thing I’ve ever done” and expressed his desire for “the public to see the truth and be inspired by it”.

But the slap continues to hang over everything in Smith’s orbit, despite his latest public apology.

“No matter how good the movie is, all the press, all the critics, all the feature writers, all the awards tipsters are going to watch it and talk about the slap in the face,” said the former Fox co-chief executive. Searchlight. Stephen Gilula told The Times. ‚ÄúThere is a very high risk that the film will not be judged on its pure merit. This puts it in a very untenable context.

After slapping Rock, Smith resigned as a fellow of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and was banned from attending the Oscars for the next decade. However, he can still be nominated for an award, if academy members find any of his future performances worthy.

In his apology video posted in JulySmith pledged to make amends to those he had hurt through his behavior.

“I am deeply dedicated and committed to bringing light, love and joy into the world,” he said. “And, you know, if you hang in there, I promise we can be friends again.”