During the 94th Academy Awards, King Richard’s Will Smith stormed the stage and confronted comedian Chris Rock for making a disrespectful joke about Will’s wife Jada.
Before this very awkward altercation, Rock had been making a comedic speech, roasting various celebrities in attendance and getting a rise out of the audience. However, it would seem that one particular joke went down like a lead balloon.
“Jada, I love ya. G.I. Jane 2, I can’t wait to see it,” Chris boldly remarked, referring to Jada’s harrowing journey with alopecia.
Will appears to be laughing at the joke initially, however, Jada is far from amused as she physically cringed, rolled her eyes and shook her head. Meanwhile, the audience themselves are a bit unsure how to react, as people gasp and ‘ooooh’.
“That – that was a nice one. Okay!” Chris shot back, trying to defend himself. However, by this point Will had started to storm the stage, approaching the Madagascar star before smacking him across the face.
Turning on his heels, Will returned to his seat next to his wife. Chris, not missing a beat, continued, “Oh wow. Wow. Will Smith just smacked the shit out of me,” getting a laugh out of the crowd.
However, things certainly took an uncomfortable turn next as Will shouts, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f**king mouth!”
“Wow dude… it was a G.I. Jane joke,” Chris responded, clearly a bit shaken, as Will continued, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f**king mouth!”
“I will,” Chris replied before continuing on with his speech.
Later on in the evening, Smith won the award for Best Actor, for his role in the film King Richard, however, it seems the previous incident was still playing on his mind as he referenced it and apologised for it during his acceptance speech.
“I know to be able to do what we do, you’ve got to be able to take abuse, you’ve got to be able to have people talk crazy about you,” Will tearfully said. “In this business you’ve got to be able to have people disrespecting you, and you’ve got to smile and pretend like that’s ok.”
Continuing, the dad-of-two apologised to the Academy and to his fellow nominees, but did not publicly apologise to Chris.
The Oscar Award Show will be airing on RTÉ Two this evening at 9:35pm.