After Will Smith ‘s now famous slap to Chris Rock during last Oscar night, the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences has created a crisis unit to handle any emergencies.
Bill Kramer , CEO of the Academy, revealed it during an interview published by Time :
Given last year’s events, we have opened our minds to the many things that can happen during the Oscars. But these crisis plans – the crisis communications team and the structures we have put in place – allow us to say “This is the group we need to get together very quickly” […]. This is the spokesperson. This will be the announcement. And, of course, depending on the specifics of the crisis, and we hope that nothing happens and we never have to use them, we already have structures ready that we can modify.
Kramer also brings up the small crisis of recent weeks, when Andrea Riseborough ‘s nomination for To Leslie was the subject of an investigation , to underline the speed of the Academy’s reaction, due precisely to the existence of this new crisis unit :
I think that’s why we were much more ready to handle the campaign rule discussion after the nominations. That happened on a Tuesday, and six days later we were able to issue a formal statement from the board setting out our plan […].
The probability that something comparable to last year’s slap will happen this year is very low, but the Academy has everything under control this time around.