Still processing. Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars is arguably the most shocking thing to ever happen at the Academy Awards, so it’s no surprise that late-night hosts had a lot to say about it.
Jimmy Kimmel, who hosted the ceremony in 2017 and 2018, was surprised that the King Richard actor, 53, found a way to upstage what was previously the wildest thing to happen at the Oscars: Faye Dunaway and Warren Beatty mistakenly announcing La La Land as the Best Picture winner over real winner Moonlight.
“I’m a little bummed because I’ve only now hosted the second craziest Oscars of all time,” the Man Show alum, 54 quipped during the Monday, March 28, episode of Jimmy Kimmel Live! “Maybe they should do this at every awards show. ‘Still to come, the Grammy for Record of the Year, and who will Dua Lipa physically assault? Bruno Mars or Olivia Rodrigo? Find out next on the 64th Annual Grammy Awards!'”
Stephen Colbert, for his part, joked that the slap was the “worst thing” Smith had ever done before quickly changing his mind. “Wait, I forgot about Wild Wild West,” the comedian, 57, said on The Late Show With Stephen Colbert. “I’m kidding, obviously. The worst thing he’s ever done is Gemini Man. Someone should slap both of the guys in that movie.”
The Men in Black star made headlines on Sunday, March 27, when he walked on stage and slapped Rock, 57, who was in the process of presenting the trophy for Best Documentary Feature. The Saturday Night Live alum joked that Will’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, could star in a sequel to G.I. Jane because of her shortly buzzed haircut.
The Philadelphia native initially seemed to laugh at the quip, leading some viewers to think the slap was part of a bit. It quickly became clear that it wasn’t planned, however, when the Ali star sat back down and yelled, “Keep my wife’s name out your f–king mouth!”
The following day, the newly-minted Oscar winner took to Instagram to apologize for the incident. “Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive,” he wrote via Instagram on Monday. “My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable. Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally.” (The Magic Mike XXL actress, 50, has been candid about her alopecia diagnosis.)
The “Miami” rapper went on to “publicly apologize” to Rock. “I was out of line and I was wrong,” he continued. “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.”
Jada, for her part, subtly reacted to the situation on Tuesday, sharing an Instagram quote that read, “This is a season for healing and I’m here for it.”
Keep scrolling to see what else late-night hosts had to say about the viral moment.