Best actor nominee Will Smith has smacked presenter Chris Rock in the face with an open hand and shouted a vulgarity at the comedian for making a joke about his wife’s appearance at the Oscars ceremony.
Rock made a joke about the hairstyle of Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith that referenced the movie G.I. Jane, in which actress Demi Moore shaved her head.
Smith, who is nominated for best actor for King Richard, stormed onto the stage and slapped Rock in what at first appeared to be a scripted joke.
But the mood turned sombre moments later when Smith, back in his seat, shouted back, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth”.
A clearly shaken Rock went on to present the award for best documentary feature to Summer of Soul (Or, When The Revolution Could Not Be Televised).
— eve (@happilyevey) March 28, 2022
Will Smith’s publicist had a discussion with him during the commercial break after he smacked Chris Rock
— Culture Crave 🍿 (@CultureCrave) March 28, 2022
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During the commercial break, Will Smith is pulled aside and comforted by Denzel Washington and Tyler Perry, who motion for him to brush it off. Will appears to wipe tears from his eyes as he sits back down with Jada, with Denzel comforting Jada and Will’s rep by his side. pic.twitter.com/uDGVnWrSS2
— Scott Feinberg (@ScottFeinberg) March 28, 2022