AFPA billboard from the Chris Rock special streamed live by Netflix yesterday
NOS Nieuws•vandaag, 11:38
American comedian Chris Rock has commented extensively for the first time on the blow that actor Will Smith gave him at the Oscars last year. In the Netflix special Selective outrage that aired live last night, Rock said he’s still dealing with it.
“People still ask if it hurt. It still hurts. I still hear Summertime in my ears,” referring to a Will Smith song that he had a worldwide hit with as a rapper. “I was beaten by this son of a bitch.”
At the Oscars last year, host Rock made a joke about Will Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, who was also present. She suffers from the autoimmune disease alopecia, which causes her hair to fall out. Rock said she was ready with her bald head for a sequel to GI Jane, the movie Demi Moore shaved her head for in 1997.
At this, Smith walked on stage and punched the comedian in the face. Rock remained on stage in shock. He said of the blow yesterday: “Will Smith is considerably taller than me. We are not the same size.”
Here’s the moment Will Smith slaps the comedian:
Actor Will Smith slams Oscar winner Chris Rock
The comedian said he didn’t return a hit because of his parents. “Because I was raised. And you know what my parents taught me? Don’t fight in front of white people.”
According to him, the joke he made about Smith’s wife is sensitive because she admitted to cheating during an interview with her husband. Of that interview, Rock said yesterday, “None of us have ever been interviewed on television by the person who cheated on us. She hurt him a lot more than he hurt me.”
A few days after the blow, the comedian said he didn’t want to comment yet and would do so at a later date. “And it will be serious and funny,” Rock said at the time.
Now he came back to it on the show for the first time. “I’m not a victim. You’ll never see me cry to Oprah or Gayle. Never gonna happen. I took that punch like the boxer Manny Pacquiao.”
Will Smith apologized to Chris Rock a few months ago. “Violence in all forms is toxic and destructive,” the 53-year-old actor wrote on Instagram. “I’d like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I behaved inappropriately and I was wrong. I’m ashamed.”
Smith says he has tried to contact Rock. But according to the actor, the comedian was not ready to talk.
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences that organizes the Oscars has decided that Will Smith will no longer be allowed to attend the Oscars for ten years. Also, he is not allowed to go to any other Academy event.