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Will Smith’s first project since Oscars fiasco gets December release date

Smith's upcoming film, "Emancipation," comes after he made headlines in March for slapping host Chris Rock on stage.
Will Smith holds up his Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role for "King Richard" in Hollywood.
Will Smith accepts the award for best actor for "King Richard" in Los Angeles on March 27. Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images file

Will Smith’s upcoming film, “Emancipation,” will be released in theaters on Dec. 2 and on Apple TV+ a week later on Dec. 9.

It’s Smith’s first project since the Oscars, where he made headlines for slapping host Chris Rock on stage and winning Best Actor for his titular role in “King Richard.”

Smith subsequently resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and the Academy banned him from attending the Oscars ceremonies for 10 years. Smith is still eligible to be nominated for the awards.

Will Smith slaps Chris Rock during the Oscars in Hollywood, Calif.,  on March 27, 2022.
Will Smith slaps Chris Rock at the Oscars ceremony in Los Angeles on March 27.Robyn Beck / AFP via Getty Images file

In “Emancipation,” Smith plays a runaway slave searching for his family in the swamps of Louisiana. Apple announced the release date alongside a trailer for the film.

The movie has received positive response after a pre-screening hosted during the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 51st Annual Legislative Conference this past weekend, according to entertainment media reports.

In a tweet, NAACP CEO Derrick Johnson called the film “a story of adversity, of resilience, of love, and of triumph.”

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