Saturday 29 April 2017

Sam Smith shuts down Twitter account 'for a while' - a day after he was forced to defend Oscars acceptance speech

British singer-songwriter Sam Smith, winner for Best Original Song for
British singer-songwriter Sam Smith, winner for Best Original Song for "Writing's on the Wall" from the movie "Spectre", gestures at the Governors Ball following the 88th Academy Awards in Hollywood, California February 28, 2016. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson

Singer Sam Smith is shutting down his Twitter account "for a while", a day after he was forced to defend his Academy Awards speech.

The British star, who struck gold for his Spectre theme tune Writing's on the Wall, took to the social media site on Tuesday to tell fans he was going offline, but insisted his absence wouldn't be permanent.

 "I'm logging off for a while," he wrote, before making a James Bond quip: "Some Martinis shaken not stirred are definitely in order."

 His news comes just a day after he responded to critics who had blasted him for falsely assuming he was the first openly gay man to win an Oscar at Sunday night's ceremony.

 During his acceptance speech for Best Original Song, Sam dedicated his win to the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) community and paraphrased an article written by British actor Ian McKellen, who noted that no openly gay man has ever won an Oscar. The veteran was only referring to the main acting categories, a distinction which appeared to have been lost on Sam.

 "If this is the case, even if it isn't the case, I wanna dedicate this to the LGBT community all around the world," the singer told the Dolby Theatre audience. "I stand here tonight as a proud gay man and I hope we can all stand together as equals one day."

 His comments evoked anger from openly gay writer-director Dustin Lance Black, who won an Oscar for Milk in 2009, and tweeted Sam to correct him.

 "THE POINT: knowing our LGBTQ history is important," he wrote. "We stand on the shoulders of countless brave men and women who paved the way for us."

 Following the backlash, Sam took to Twitter to explain his comments on Monday.

 "So hungover. genuinely feels like a dream," he began, before adding: "Second openly gay man to win an oscar or third or fourth or 100th, It wasn't my point ... My point was to shine some light on the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender) community who i love so dearly."

Actress Emily Ratajkowski arrives at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party in Beverly Hills, California February 28, 2016. REUTERS/Danny Moloshok
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