June 21, 2024

Will Smith Just Slapped Chris Rock Live at the 2022 Oscars


Dimas Sanfiorenzo

Dimas Sanfiorenzo is the Managing Editor for Okayplayer. He specializes…

Will Smith Chris Rock

Photo Credit: Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

Will Smith struck Chris Rock at the oscars after the comedian told a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith.

What. Just. Happened. 

The most shocking moment in the history of the Academy Awards might have just happened. In the middle of the telecast, Will Smith publicly walked up to Chris Rock and struck the comedian while he was in the middle of introducing the Best Documentary nominees. 

The moment started when Rock was doing the introduction and he made a joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith being in G.I. Jane because she had a shaved head. After Rock told the joke, you could see Jada Pinkett Smith visibly annoyed. Will then walked up to the stage and struck the comedian, then walked back to his seat. If you were watching in the states, it means you couldn’t hear what was being said — because everything was bleeped out. At first, those in the audience wondered if it was skit. But the audience was visibly stunned and so was Rock. “Will Smith just slapped the shit out of me,” the comedian said. And Smith repeatedly yelled  “Keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth!”

Soon after, Diddy came on stage for a The Godfather celebration. Diddy made mention of the altercation:“Will and Chris, we’re going to solve that like family.  Right now we’re moving on with  love. Everybody make some noise.”

After the incident occurred, reports from inside say that the actor was visibly emotional and upset. Variety reported that Smith’s publicist went up and talked with him. Denzel Washington and Tyler Perry also pulled him to the side.

About 30 minutes after the incident, Will Smith won the Oscar for Best Actor for his role as Richard Williams in King Richard. Smith’s speech was emotional. Without mentioning the incident directly, Smith spoke about the importance of protecting his family and his “people.” He also apologized to the Academy.

Smith said:

“I want to apologize to the Academy. I want to apologize to all my fellow nominees. This is a beautiful moment and I’m not crying for winning an award. It’s not about winning an award for me. It’s about being able to shine a light on all of the people. Tim and Trevor and Zack and Saniyya and Demi and Aunjanue and the entire cast and crew of King Richard, Venus and Serena, the entire Williams family. Art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams.” 

Last year, Pinkett Smith announced  she shaved her head after struggling with alopecia. In the post she wrote:

“Now at this point, I can only laugh… y’all know I’ve been struggling with alopecia. Just all of a sudden, one day…it just showed up like that. Now, this is going to be a little bit more difficult for me to hide. So, I thought I’d just share it so y’all not asking any questions…Mama’s gonna have to take it down to the scalp so nobody thinks she got brain surgery or something. Me and this alopecia are going to be friends … period!”



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