Chris Rock has addressed being slapped by Will Smith during a stand-up set. According to Annie Rose Ramos, a Baltimore based journalist who attended the comedian’s Ego Death World Tour 2022 on April 22, Rock briefly mentioned the incident during the opening moments of the gig.
“First 30 seconds Rock walks out and says ‘I’m alright I’m alright…healed from the nicks and bruises…for the most part’,” Ramos tweeted. “Then [he] doesn’t mention slap for entire one-and-a-half hour hilarious show.” It’s hardly surprising that Rock isn’t in the mood to talk about the slap heard around the world. The comedy movie star has been very open that he’s still processing what happened to him.
In case you’ve been living under a rock with a bad internet connection, Smith slapped Rock during the 94th Academy Awards ceremony after the comedian made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith’s alopecia. Smith apologised to the Academy and his fellow nominees for his actions while accepting the Best Actor award for his role in King Richard. The following day he offered a formal apology to Rock.
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behaviour at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable,” Smith shared on Instagram. “Jokes at my expense are part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear, and I reacted emotionally. I would like to publicly apologise to you, Chris. I was out of line, and I was wrong. I am embarrassed, and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”
First 30 seconds Rock walks out and says “I’m alright I’m alright…healed from the nicks and bruises…for the most part” then doesn’t mention slap for entire 1.5 hr hilarious show @wjz pic.twitter.com/OD5JhegmfO
— Annie Rose Ramos (@AnnieRoseNews) April 23, 2022
The Academy – the body that runs the Oscars – opened a formal investigation into Smith following the slap. This prompted Smith to resign from the awards body. “I am resigning from membership in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and will accept any further consequences the Board deems appropriate,” Smith said in a statement.
However, Smith’s resignation did not stop the Academy from sanctioning the star. While the Board of Governors accepted his resignation, they believed that a 10-year ban was an appropriate punishment for his behaviour.