Entertainment News Roundup: Will Smith Resigns From Film Academy, Says He’s ‘Heartbroken’; Joni Mitchell Takes the Stage at Pre-Grammys All-Star Tribute and More

Below is a summary of the entertainment news briefs.

Will Smith quits film academy, says he’s ‘heartbroken’

Actor Will Smith has resigned from the Hollywood Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, saying Friday his slap in the face of presenter Chris Rock onstage at this year’s Oscars was ‘shocking, painful and inexcusable’ . “I have betrayed the trust of the Academy. I have deprived fellow nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken,” Smith said in a statement. .

Joni Mitchell on stage during the celebrity tribute before the Grammys

Singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell, who broke gender barriers in the 1960s and 1970s to help define an era, sang on stage for the first time in years on Friday in a musical tribute to his life by artists spanning genres and generations. Musicians such as John Legend, Cyndi Lauper, Beck, Mickey Guyton and Brandi Carlile performed favorites from Mitchell’s catalog at the annual MusiCares pre-Grammys fundraising gala, held this year in Las Vegas.

French actor Depardieu denounces Putin’s “crazy excesses” in Ukraine

French actor Gérard Depardieu, who has praised Russian President Vladimir Putin in the past, criticized his “crazy and unacceptable excesses” in Ukraine. Depardieu, who took Russian nationality in 2013, told Agence France Presse on Thursday: “The Russian people are not responsible for the senseless and unacceptable excesses of their leaders like Vladimir Putin”.

Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum Bond Humor and Action in ‘The Lost City’

Hollywood stars Sandra Bullock and Channing Tatum say they became close while directing new blockbuster ‘The Lost City’, connecting through their shared childish sense of humour. The romantic comedy adventure stars Bullock as Loretta Sage, a best-selling novelist who becomes a recluse after her husband’s untimely death. Persuaded by her publicist to embark on a press tour to promote her latest book with her handsome cover model Alan (Tatum), life begins to imitate her craft when an eccentric billionaire, played by Daniel Radcliffe, kidnaps Sage, convinced that she can lead him to an ancient treasure he believes is buried on a tropical island.

Police offered to arrest Will Smith, Oscars producer says

Los Angeles police were on the scene and ready to arrest actor Will Smith at the Oscars on Sunday for slapping host Chris Rock, the Hollywood ceremony producer said Thursday. Authorities took no action because Rock refused to press charges, producer Will Packer said, echoing what a police spokesman said Sunday.

Sequel to Tom Cruise’s ‘Top Gun’ to Screen at Cannes Film Festival

Tom Cruise will screen his highly anticipated sequel to “Top Gun” at the Cannes Film Festival in May, where an event will also look back on his Hollywood career, organizers announced Friday. Thirty-six years after Cruise’s cocky pilot Maverick soared through the skies, ‘Top Gun: Maverick,’ which sees the actor reprise the role that launched his career as a global action star, will begin its worldwide theatrical rollout from May 25 after several pandemic-related delays.

(With agency contributions.)

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