Here's What Critics Think Of Will Smith’s First Movie Since Oscars Slap

By Tony M. Centeno

October 2, 2022

Will Smith
Photo: Getty Images

Will Smith is slowly making his way back into the spotlight ahead of his first film following his Oscars fiasco. Although the actor was banned from the Academy awards show, the feedback from his upcoming movie indicates his name could pop up next year.

According to a report TMZ published on Sunday, October 2, Will Smith was on site for a special screening of his new film Emancipation at the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s 51st annual Legislative Conference on Saturday. During the event hosted by the NAACP, Smith and director Antoine Fuqua spoke about the Apple TV original.

In the film, Smith portrays "Whipped Peter" -- a slave from the 1800s who's photos of his scarred back still have people talking more than 200 years later. He said the film is about perseverance and the determination to survive and be free. He described his previous skepticism about participating in slave movies, but explained why this film was different.

Critics are raving the film as "incredible and quite powerful." Prior to Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars earlier this year, Emancipation was reportedly a potential contender for an Academy award, and still may be. Even though Smith won't be allowed to attend the award show for 10 years, he can still be nominated again. If he does win in the future, someone will have to accept the award on his behalf.

At the moment, there's no word on when Emancipation will make its debut. However, since they're already screening the film, it's possible that it may drop before the end of the year.

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