Will Smith appeared to have allegedly assaulted Chris Rock during a segment for the 94th Academy Awards, after the comedian made a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett-Smith.
While Rock was presenting the award for Best Documentary Feature, Rock made a joke referencing Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett-Smith, and her bald head. Smith proceeded to walk on stage, slap Rock in the face, and engage in a shouting match with the comedian. Roughly 15 seconds of audio was cut from the national broadcast but can be heard below in a now-viral clip.
Rock made a reference to G.I. Jane in relation to Pinkett-Smith’s bald head. Tweets allege that Smith yelled at Rock to “Keep my wife’s name out of your f**king mouth.”
Initially, there was some uncertainty over whether the assault was faked or not. When the broadcast returned, there was a significant amount of dead air and a number of shocked reactions from attendants. There is no confirmation at the moment whether the event was genuine or not.
Pinkett-Smith was diagnosed with the hair loss condition alopecia in 2018. The actress has spoken openly about her diagnosis on her social media accounts and in interviews.
Shortly after the moment, Smith’s publicist came to visit his table and seemingly calm the star down. It will go down as one of the most shocking moments in Oscars history.
In footage shared below, Denzel Washington appears to comfort Smith after the ordeal, attempting to help the star brush off the event. To cap it all off, Smith went on to pick up the award for Best Actor.
Delivering what has to be one of the most memorable Oscar speeches of all time, Will Smith made reference to the previous event and apologised to the Academy.
UNCENSORED WILL SMITH FOOTAGE AS SHOWN ON AUSTRALIAN TV pic.twitter.com/NcRfdjWxqe— David Mack (@davidmackau) March 28, 2022
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