Chris Rock Finally Opens Up About Infamous Will Smith Slap, Dave Chapelle Backs Him Up
Comedian Chris Rock has begun speaking publicly about being assaulted by Will Smith at the 2022 Oscars.
The comedian spoke about the infamous “slap heard around the world” during an appearance in a European tour on Thursday, according to Deadline.
WARNING: This article contains graphic language that some viewers will find offensive.
Rock was performing at M&S Bank Arena in Liverpool, England. Dave Chapelle also appeared at the event.
“Did it hurt?” Rock asked the crowd, going on to answer his own question.
“G**d*** right … the motherf***er hit me over a bulls*** joke, the nicest joke I ever told,” Rock said of the assault, according to the New York Post.
Tense moments at this year’s #Oscars as Will Smith confronted Chris Rock on stage live on tv, following a joke that mocked a medical condition of his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.https://t.co/EViXaQY1NZ pic.twitter.com/cmG3abSiRW
— Good Morning America (@GMA) March 28, 2022
Smith became enraged when Rock made a joke about his wife’s baldness during the March award ceremony.
He approached Rock in the middle of the Oscars host’s set routine, delivering a forceful slap to Rock’s face.
Smith was banned from attending future Academy awards events for 10 years as punishment for the assault.
Rock has declined to speak about the assault in detail before. The comedian declined to press charges against Smith for his actions, according to an Oscars producer who was interviewed on Good Morning America.
Rock recounted how he returned to work the day after the Oscars assault, rejecting the idea of identifying as a victim after the incident, according to Deadline.
Chapelle reflected on Smith’s conduct during the awards show, suggesting that the actor’s previous public persona had been deceitful.
Smith “did an impression of a perfect man for 30 years,” according to Chapelle. “I just hope he doesn’t put that mask back on.”
In comparison, Chapelle brought up an incident in which an armed man assaulted him in a Los Angeles comedy performance.
Rock made light of that incident in the same Los Angeles show, asking if Will Smith had been the man who rushed him on stage.
Chris Rock turned down an invitation to host the 2023 Oscars, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
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