The American actor slapped Rock in the face on stage after the comic made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
Rock had taken aim at Pinkett Smith’s shaved head, which is a result of the hair-loss condition alopecia.
“Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally,” Smith said in a statement.
He continued: “I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”
Read full statement below:
Smith’s apology comes after the Oscars film academy condemned the incident in a statement and announced a formal review.
“We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law,” it said.