Chris Rock has yet to speak publicly about the Will Smith incident at the Oscars, but reports are pouring in of his behind-the-scenes reaction.
Smith shocked live audiences at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles on Sunday (March 27) when he stepped onto the stage and slapped Rock in the face with his open hand during the ceremony.
The moment came after Rock made a joke about Pinkett Smith, referring to her as “GI Jane” in reference to her shaved head. Pinkett Smith has opened up about her diagnosis of alopecia.
Rock was stunned, telling the crowd, “Will Smith just blew me away.” Smith, who had returned to his seat, then shouted, “Keep my wife’s name out of your damn mouth.”
Moments later, Smith gave a tearful speech apologizing to everyone but Rock after winning Best Actor for King Richard. He has since apologized to the comedian.
In his apology, the King Richard star said he understands that jokes are part of his life as a public figure and that “violence in all its forms is toxic and destructive.”
Rock has yet to publicly accept the apology, but reportedly didn’t know Pinkett Smith had alopecia, according to TMZ.
A source close to Rock has also claimed that Rock and Smith have yet to speak to each other about the incident.
Shortly after the ceremony ended, it was reported that Rock had declined to press charges.
After the altercation, a joke Rock made about Pinkett Smith at the 2016 Oscars resurfaced online.
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Will Smith beat Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards
(AFP via Getty Images)
The academy has said it can discipline Smith over the incident.
“The Academy condemns Mr Smith’s actions at last night’s show,” the organization said in a statement following the controversy. “We have officially begun a formal review of the incident and will review further actions and consequences consistent with our bylaws, standards of conduct and California law.”
Smith’s actions have divided opinion in Hollywood and on social media, with a number of celebrities, critics and public figures – including senators and British MPs – giving their thoughts on the incident.
Last night (Monday, March 28), former Golden Globes host Ricky Gervais appeared to respond to the altercation by sharing a clip from his popular series The Office.
Here is the full list of 2022 Oscar winners here. Check out the latest updates and reactions from the dramatic ceremony hereand read the main talking points here.