By Abby Liebing
The popular western drama “Yellowstone” has garnered a large audience and loyal fan base, and it has now been nominated in the Screen Actors Guild Awards.
But one of the show’s popular actors, Forrie J. Smith has announced he will not be attending the awards, due to the COVID-19 vaccination requirements.
Smith has been one of the core actors of the show, playing the role of Lloyd Pierce, one of the old, loyal cowboys.
“I want to apologize to y’all for not being at the Screen Actors Guild Awards,” Smith told his Instagram followers, Variety reported.
“I mean no offense to anyone. I’m not vaccinated, and it’s a requirement to be vaccinated.”
The award ceremony is scheduled for Feb. 27, and all individuals at the event are required to be fully vaccinated. They also must have the booster shot if they are eligible. On top of the vaccination requirement, those who attend will have to submit a negative COVID PCR test, taken within 48 hours of arriving at the awards, The Hill reported.
Those who attend will also be rapid tested on the day of the event, and KN95 or FF94 masks must be worn at all times during the event.
There are exceptions for masks if individuals are participating in the red carpet or media opportunities, are on camera, eating or drinking.
Though “Yellowstone” has a huge audience and following, this is the first award attention that the show has received in its four seasons of running, Variety reported.
The cast was nominated for the top category of ensemble in TV drama, along with other popular shows like “Succession,” “Squid Game,” “The Morning Show” and “Handmaid’s Tale.”
“Yellowstone’s” season four finale, which came out in January, drew 9.3 million viewers, VicaomCBS recorded, as Forbes reported.
Forbes called that level of viewership “a Game of Thrones-level figure that is an anomaly in a medium in which same-day viewership is falling.”
But despite this award buzz and popularity, Smith said that he will not get vaccinated for the SAG awards.
“I’m not vaccinated, I will not get vaccinated. I haven’t been vaccinated since I was a little kid. I don’t vaccinate my dogs, I don’t vaccinate my horses. I’ve never had a flu shot. I never will. I believe they compromise your immunities,” Smith said, Variety reported.
Unlike many others in the cast of the show, who are actors playing the parts of cowboys and ranchers, Smith is actually a real life cowboy, turned actor for the show.
Smith was born in Helena, Montana, and raised on his grandparent’s ranch. He started doing rodeo at the age of eight and then spent years on the rodeo circuit with his parents, Rodeo News reported.
Smith also used his rodeos skills of riding bucking horses and bulls to be a stunt man. He has been a stunt man for 25 years, alongside his rodeo career.
This led to him eventually being a guest star on “Yellowstone,” but then he got a contract to be one of the main cowboys.
But despite his popularity and the fame of the show, Smith doesn’t want to be vaccinated to attend the award ceremony.
“It’s just my beliefs,” Smith said. “I just don’t believe in that stuff. Whatever.”
Author: Abby Liebing
Source: Western Journal: Actor from Hit Show Refuses to Attend Awards Show Over Vaccine Requirement