Jonathan Majors addresses assault conviction during Perseverance Award ceremony; 'I have shortcomings'

Evan Rosen and Molly Crane-Newman, New York Daily News on

Published in Entertainment News

Jonathan Majors received the Perseverance Award at the Hollywood Unlocked Impact Awards on Friday night, and took time to address his recent assault conviction, saying, “guilt and innocence often have little to do with the outcome.”

The 34-year-old actor spoke at the Beverly Hills ceremony and immediately broke down in tears as he took the stage, following a short reel of his career highlights and a presentation by inspirational speaker and spiritual teacher Iyanla Vanzant.

“I’m imperfect. I have shortcomings — I acknowledge them,” Majors admitted, in a quote obtained by Variety. “Perseverance means persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay … and the God I serve has put me in a position where I’ve had to embody that word more than I wished or wanted.”

On Dec.18, 2023, the “Creed III” star was found guilty of misdemeanor domestic violence offenses for attacking his ex-girlfriend, Grace Jabbari, and was promptly dropped by Marvel Studios and Disney a short while later.

In a split verdict, Majors was convicted of assault in the third degree and second-degree harassment for a March 25 altercation in the back of a private car driving through lower Manhattan.


During Friday’s awards event, he spoke about his experience with his criminal trial: “As a Black man in the criminal justice system, I felt anger, I felt sadness, hurt, surprise. When they snatched me up out of my apartment in handcuffs, I didn’t feel like all that. I didn’t feel like Jonathan Majors, Mr. Creed, Mr. Kang. … I felt like a little scared, weak boy.”

“Despite the support and evidence that was in my favor, I knew s— was bad. And it was bad because of who I was and what I am,” Majors continued. “And this is what happens to Black people all too often. Guilt and innocence often have little to do with the outcome. That’s the harsh reality I learned. But I know Black men face this every day. It deeply impacts us, changes the way we navigate through the world.”

The ceremony, hosted by comedian Tiffany Haddish, also honored other notable figures including Cardi B, civil rights attorney Ben Crump and designer Christian Louboutin.

Majors, who is now set to star in the upcoming revenge thriller “Merciless,” directed by Martin Villeneuve, received a standing ovation at the conclusion of his speech.

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