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Will Smith fans divided after Netflix 'pulls away' from actor's biopic

The actor recently resigned from the Academy

will smith netflix
Francesca Shillcock
Senior Features Writer
4 April 2022
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Fans of Will Smith have been voicing their frustration following the news that Netflix is reportedly backing out of a bidding war to win the rights to his autobiography, Will, with the intention of making a biopic about the actor's life.

MORE: Will Smith's The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air co-star Tatyana Ali breaks silence – 'I believe in him'

The Hollywood Reporter stated over the weekend that the streaming giant has "quietly stepped back" from proceedings regarding the biopic in the wake of the shock moment Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage.

WATCH: Will Smith apologises to the Academy after slapping Chris Rock

But it seems many fans of Will had a lot to say on the news. One person said on Twitter: "Hollywood silently trying to blacklist THE Will Smith over an incident he already apologized for twice has got to be one of the most obvious examples of the systematic racism still present in the industry."

A second agreed, writing: "I know Will Smith slapped someone, but I am genuinely shocked at how quickly Hollywood is moving to end his career right now. I mean putting his movies on pause? I think that's a bit much when many abusers get away with worse and get to still have their careers."

MORE: 'Heartbroken' Will Smith makes surprise career decision after Chris Rock altercation

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will smiht oscar© Photo: Getty Images

Will Smith's biopic has reportedly been put on back burner by Netflix

A third commented: "This isn't fair, Will did something wrong and so did Chris but they are both really good persons and really good actors. They are other celebrities who should get this treatment and not Will."

However, others were more supportive of the move. One argued: "His actions will have repercussions within the industry. After the incident, with social media, it will be hard to sweep all this under the rug. Hopefully, more studios and talent back away from him because nothing will change until the industry holds its own accountable."

will slap chris rock© Photo: Getty Images

The move from the streaming giant comes in the wake of Will slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars

Another agreed with this viewpoint, writing: "Good decision. No place for violence people."

Meanwhile, Will announced his resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. over the weekend in a statement. The King Richard star said: "I have directly responded to the Academy's disciplinary hearing notice, and I will fully accept any and all consequences for my conduct.

"My actions at the 94th Academy Awards presentation were shocking, painful, and inexcusable. The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home. I betrayed the trust of the Academy." 

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