During the 94th Academy Awards on Sunday, “King Richard” star Will Smith hit stand-up comedian Chris Rock after the comedian made a joke about the actor’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
Will Smith later apologized to the film academy and his fellow nominees as tears streamed down his face after accepting the best actor Oscar for “King Richard.” He did not, however, address Rock and attempted to justify his actions.
“Life is imitated by art. Just like Richard Williams, I appear to be a crazy father. Love, on the other hand, will drive you insane “Will Smith spoke as he was honored for his role as Richard Williams, father of tennis legends Venus and Serena Williams.
The confrontation between Will Smith and Rock stunned the audience inside the Dolby Theater. Pinkett Smith revealed in 2018 that she had been diagnosed with alopecia, a condition that causes hair loss. Demi Moore starred in Ridley Scott’s action film “G.I. Jane” (1997) as a woman who joins the Navy and shaves her head during her military service.
Smith then marched to the Dolby Theater stage and performed Rock. The sound then went out on the US broadcast, but Will Smith could be heard shouting, “Keep my wife’s name out of your mouth!”
Smith appeared to compare the incident to Richard Williams‘ fiery spirit in his acceptance speech. He stated that he was given the opportunity to “protect” his co-stars in “King Richard.”
He claimed that performers in the entertainment industry are forced to “take abuse” because “people talk crazy about you.”
Smith stated, “I want to be a vessel for love.”
The extraordinary moment sparked a frenzy of discussion on social media, where it was meticulously dissected. Following the incident, many people tweeted that it was strange that the show’s producers continued with the show.
Journalists present for the ceremony’s coverage tweeted that, following the incident, Smith was approached by his publicist, as well as fellow performers Denzel Washington and Tyler Perry.
Following the conclusion of the show, the Los Angeles Police Department stated that they were aware of the incident, but Rock declined to file a police report. “If the involved party wishes to obtain a police report at a later date, the LAPD will be available to complete an investigation report,” the department said in a statement.
Smith received mostly positive feedback for his portrayal of Richard Williams, a coach and one-man public relations machine who pushed his gifted daughters to athletic greatness. The actor’s victory on Sunday night marks a career milestone for one of the most influential and highest-grossing Hollywood stars in the last 30 years.
Smith rose to movie stardom in the 1990s with hits such as “Bad Boys,” “Independence Day,” and “Men in Black,” after he chose to begin his acting career as surely an intriguing hip-hop MC as well as the star of the NBC sitcom named “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air.”
In the years since Smith has alternated between blockbusters and roles in Oscar-nominated dramas.
In 2002, the year Washington became only the second Black man to win the best actor for “Training Day,” he was nominated for “Ali.” Five years later, he was nominated for “The Pursuit of Happiness,” but lost to Forest Whitaker for “The Last King of Scotland.”
Kathy Griffin, a comedian, and actress has expressed concern for the safety of comedy performers. “Let me tell you something: walking up on stage and physically assaulting a comedian is a very bad practice,” she said. “Now we all have to be concerned about who wants to be Will Smith in comedy clubs and theaters.”