“Was that Will Smith?” Rock, 57, joked in a TikTok clip from the Netflix Is a Joke festival in Los Angeles on Tuesday, May 2. Although the event was considered a “phone-free experience,” some footage surfaced online after Chappelle, 48, was tackled by a person during his performance.
Rock was referring to an incident at the 2022 Oscars when Smith, 53, slapped him amid the live awards show. During the 94th annual Academy Awards, the Madagascar actor made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith‘s shaved head when he suggested she should be cast in G.I. Jane 2. After Pinkett Smith, 50, who has alopecia, rolled her eyes at the comment, her husband shocked the audience with his response.
“Will Smith just smacked the s—t out of me,” the South Carolina native said in uncensored footage that later circulated online in March. As he returned to his seat, the King Richard star yelled back at Rock to “keep my wife’s name out your f—king mouth.”
At the time, a source exclusively told Us Weekly that Rock and Smith did not interact off stage after the altercation. “Chris is focusing on his tour,” the insider shared. “He’s moving on and is looking forward to his upcoming gigs.”
That same month, Rock confirmed that he didn’t have any contact with the Philadelphia native. “I haven’t talked to anyone despite what you may have heard,” the Grown Ups actor told the audience at a stand-up show, according to multiple outlets.
One day after the Oscars, Smith issued a public apology to Rock for his “unacceptable and inexcusable” actions. “I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness,” he wrote via Instagram.
The Hitch actor added: “I would also like to apologize to The Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us.”
The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences later confirmed that Smith would be banned from all Oscars events for 10 years following his resignation. The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air alum responded to his punishment, saying in a statement to Page Six in April, “I accept and respect the Academy’s decision.”
Pinkett Smith recently hinted that the topic will be addressed during season 5 of her Facebook series. “Considering all that has happened in the last few weeks, the Smith family has been focusing on deep healing. Some of the discoveries around our healing will be shared at the table when the time calls,” a statement from the Red Table Talk host read late last month.
The message continued: “Until then… the table will continue offering itself to powerful, inspiring and healing testimonies like that of our incredibly impressive first guest. Thanks for joining us, Jada.”
The comedy scene continued to make headlines when Chappelle was knocked to the ground before attendees including Rock and Jamie Foxx stepped in to stop the man. Authorities later identified the suspect as Isaiah Lee, who was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and is being held on $30,000 bail. Lee, 23, who was armed with a replica gun during the incident, was detained and later taken to a nearby hospital to treat “superficial injuries.”
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