Celebrities’ reactions to Will Smith’s slap in the face of Chris Rock at the Oscars

By Chantal DaSilva – NBCnews

Will Smith’s slap in the face of Chris Rock at the Oscars stunned attendees and instantly sparked intense reactions online, including from a litany of celebrities.

The actor’s clash with the comedian onstage dominated the 94th Academy Awards on Sunday after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, suffering from alopecia.

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In the hours after the altercation, celebrities expressed a mix of shock, disappointment and outrage at the incident. Some also expressed their support for Smith, who ended up winning the award for best actor for his leading role in the film. king richard.

In a since-deleted tweet, director Judd Apatow expressed strong criticism of Smith’s actions, saying: “He could have killed (Rock). That is pure rage and violence out of control.”

“You’ve heard a million jokes about them in the last three decades. They are not new to the world of Hollywood and comedy. He has lost his mind”said the director of Funny People.

Rock had made a joke while preparing to present the award for best documentary. “Jade, I love you. ‘GI Jane 2,’ I can’t wait to see you,” the comedian said, an apparent reference to Pinkett Smith’s shaved head, as the actress had revealed in 2018 that she suffers from alopecia, a disease that causes hair loss.

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The comment received a quick reaction from Smith, who took the stage and slapped Rock across the face, before telling the comedian to “keep my wife’s name out of her f—- mouth.”

Smith later apologized to the Motion Picture Academy and his fellow nominees as he accepted the Best Actor Oscar for his role in king richardwhere he plays the father of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams.

“Art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, as they said of Richard Williams. But love will make you do crazy things,” he stated in a tearful speech. He did not offer a direct apology to Rock, who police say declined to file a report over the incident.

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“It was crazy,” actor LaKeith Stanfield told Variety at the Vanity Fair Oscar Party after the awards show. “I don’t know, it was surreal,” she noted.

Also from the after party, actress Minnie Driver said it was “hard to watch” the altercation unfold. “We all witnessed something that had our emotions running high,” she said, adding that she hoped they would “reconcile later.”

“Violence is not okay. Aggression is never the answer.”actress and director Sophia Bush tweeted. However, she also voiced her criticism of Rock’s prank, noting, “This is the second time Chris has made fun of Jada onstage at the Oscars, and tonight he’s gone for her baldness,” she noted.

Bradley Cooper and Will Smith during a break from the Oscars at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, California, on Sunday, March 27, 2022.
Bradley Cooper and Will Smith during a break from the Oscars at the Dolby Theater in Los Angeles, California, on Sunday, March 27, 2022.Chris Pizzello / Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

“Making a joke about someone’s autoimmune disease is wrong. Doing it on purpose is cruel. They both need a break.”

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Bush seemed to be referring to the 2016 Oscars, where Rock mocked Pinkett Smith, who had boycotted the ceremony as part of the movement. Oscars So White (Oscars are very white.) Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties. She wasn’t invited,” she said at the awards show.

However, actress Mia Farrow defended Rock’s comments, tweeting: “It was just a joke.”

“Pranks are what Chris Rock does. He has always been daring. This was a soft joke for him. And I love GI Jane,” Farrow said.

NBA star Stephen Curry, who was an executive producer on Queen of Basketballthe short that won the award for best documentary, said he was “shocked by the whole thing.”

“But in all the unnecessary drama, at least we have Denzel’s catchphrase of the night,” he said, referring to words of wisdom Smith said actor Denzel Washington had offered him before winning the Oscar: “In your best moment, be careful. That’s when the devil comes for you.”

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Actress and model Jodie Turner-Smith said she was still “processing” the incident, writing: “I am embarrassed by everyone involved.”

Some celebrities also showed up to express their support for Smith, with Will and Jada Pinkett Smith’s son Jaden Smith among them.

“And this is how we do it,” Jaden Smith wrote in a tweet later in the evening. It was not clear what he was referring to exactly.

For his part, rapper and actor 50 Cent appeared to downplay the incident, sharing a photo of the altercation with the words, “B—-don’t ever play games with me. LOL”.

In an interview on the red carpet from the british tv show good morning britainFormer One Direction member Liam Payne also appeared to defend Smith’s actions, saying, “I think whatever he felt he did, he had a right to do.”

Calling Smith’s speech and tearful apology for the incident a “powerful moment” in which he witnessed “one of the world’s greatest emotional … speaking from the heart,” he said he would “rather bring out the beauty of the situation than the pain.”

In a brief statement after the incident, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said it “does not condone violence in any form.”

“Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our winners of the 94th Academy Awards, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and from film lovers around the world,” he said.

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