A biopic about Will Smith could be shelved after reports that two streaming giants who had been locked in a bidding war for the rights both pulled out after slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars.
Insiders say Netflix and Apple+ have pulled out of the race to bring the actor’s life story to the public.
Bidding is thought to have reached £10million before the platforms pulled out of the controversial Oscar events this year.
A source told The Sun: “Netflix and Apple+ have quietly withdrawn their bids for a Will Smith biopic and will instead shift funds and develop original ideas for new black actors.
“Working with Will has become a risky business. They now plan to develop ideas with more family stars like Mike Epps and Michael B. Jordan.”
Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Will has withdrawn from the Academy since the incident and faces a crucial audition on April 18 to find out whether or not he can keep the Best Actor Oscar. he won for his role in King Richard.
Shortly before standing up to accept the prestigious gong, he had stormed the stage and slapped comedian Chris in the face.
Chris had made a joke about Will’s wife, actress Jada Pinkett Smith, telling her he couldn’t wait to see her in GI Jane 2.
AFP via Getty Images)
He was referring to how Demi Moore shaved her head for the role, but Jada, who suffers from alopecia, was unimpressed.
After punching Chris, Will returned to his seat and yelled at Chris to “keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth”.
It’s also reported that a series of Will films are set to be axed.
The Hollywood Reporter claims a Netflix film called Fast and Loose and due to star Will has been shelved in light of the scandal.
The outlet said, “Shortly after Smith attacked Chris Rock on the Oscars stage, Netflix quietly moved the project to the back burner.”
TMZ also suggests that Will’s other Netflix projects The Council and Bright 2 could also be scrapped as a result of his actions.
His Apple+ Emancipation project is also deep in post-production.
Announcing his resignation from the Academy, Will said: “I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived the other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken.
“Therefore, I resign from membership in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, and will accept any other consequences the board deems appropriate.”
The Mirror has contacted Netflix and Apple+ for comment.