Sources tell the Hollywood Reporter that the streaming giant halted development on the action flick earlier this week, after Smith smacked Chris Rock during Oscars’ live telecast. The outlet reports the film had hit a major roadblock in the days before the infamous slap, as its original director, David Leitch (Deadpool 2), had decided to leave the project in favor of Universal’s Fall Guy starring Ryan Gosling.
Leitch’s decision left producers scrambling for a replacement; however, following the events at the 94th Academy Awards, Netflix decided to put Fast and Loose on pause. The streamer, which previously connected with Smith on 2017’s Bright, has yet to publicly confirm the report.
Fast and Loose tells the story of a crime boss named John Riley (Smith), who suffers memory loss after getting attacked. As he slowly puts the pieces back together, Riley discovers he has been living a double life as a kingpin and a CIA agent. Jon Hoeber and Erich Hoeber were tapped to write the script.
An insider also says Smith was given 40 pages of the Bad Boys 4 prior to the 94th Academy Awards, but Sony has also decided to halt development in wake of the slap. Smith’s next film, Emancipation, is currently in post-production and was set to premiere sometime this year; however, Apple TV+ has yet to announce an official release date.
On Friday, Smith announced his resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences, and called his actions “shocking, painful, and inexcusable.” The Academy’s Board of Governors accepted his resignation, but confirmed they will continue disciplinary proceedings against the newly minted Oscar winner.
“We have received and accepted Mr. Will Smith’s immediate resignation from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences,” Academy president David Rubin said in a statement. “We will continue to move forward with our disciplinary proceedings against Mr. Smith for violations of the Academy’s Standards of Conduct, in advance of our next scheduled board meeting on April 18.”