Will Smith Smacks Chris Rock at The Oscars
The altercation follows Chris Rock’s jokes about Smith’s wife Jada.
It is safe to say that the Academy Awards are never without their drama, whether it be the La La Land / Moonlight mix-up or that ‘Adele Dazeem’ moment, but last night’s event may have stolen the show. Last night the world witnessed fan favorite Will Smith storm on stage and smack presenter Chris Rock after he made a joke about Smith’s wife and fellow actress Jada Pinkett-Smith. Rock made a joke likening her to GI Jane due to her shaved head, mocking “Jada, I love ya. GI Jane 2, I can’t wait to see it!”, which Smith originally seems to take lightly as he is seen laughing on the reaction cam, however, Pinkett-Smith appears visibly irritated by the comment. The camera then returns to Rock when he suddenly says “uh oh” and we see Will Smith storm the stack and hear an audible smack and he physically assaults the comedian. The crowd appears audibly shocked and confused by the incident while some cheer and laugh, clearly believing that this is a part of the show as Rock continues to joke “Will Smith just smacked the **** out of me.” However, the altercation seems to take a more serious turn when Smith followed this up by yelling “Keep my wife’s name out of your ******* mouth” repeatedly at the comedian who responds with “I’m going to, ok?”
Will Smith later won an Oscar for Best Actor for his role in King Richard. In his acceptance speech the actor openly apologized to the Academy and its attendees for his earlier behavior stating that “love will make you do crazy things.” What Rock may not have been aware of when he made his joke was that Jada actually suffers from alopecia and so what may have been a light-hearted joke to him may have been a sensitive topic to Pinkett-Smith and her husband. This has caused division among spectators in which some feel that Smith was right to defend his wife considering the context of the joke, whilst others feel that Rock was just doing his job as a comedian. While the public dispute who was in the wrong in the situation it is clear that the Academy has sided with Rock as it has condemned Smith’s behavior, tweeting “The Academy does not condone violence of any form” in response to the incident. The public is now speculating as to whether the Academy will retract Smith’s win in order to highlight their lack of tolerance for the violent outburst.
The Academy does not condone violence of any form.— The Academy (@TheAcademy) March 28, 2022
Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world.
Up Next, Rosé, Zoë Kravitz and others Attend Saint Laurent’s Pre-Oscars Party in LA