London :Actor Will Smith lost his cool during the 94th Academy Awards ceremony when presenter Chris Rock cracked a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith. While Will appeared to be laughing at first about it, he soon walked up to Chris on stage and punched him in the face with full force. Twitter has shaken off the initial shock of it and is now realising how Chris was assaulted on live television. (Also read: Oscars 2022 full list of winners: Jessica Chastain and Will Smith win their first Oscars, CODA is Best Picture)
Even the Academy has finally responded to the episode. “The Academy does not condone violence of any form,” the Academy shared in a tweet. However, they followed it up with quite vague and unrelated words: “Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world.”
“Take back the Oscar and give it to Andrew,” wrote a fan in the comments of Academy’s Tweet. A few minutes after the slap, Will Smith was crowned Best Actor at the ceremony for his performance in King Richard. “Honestly, Chris Rock taking an open handed undefended hit live on TV from a dude way bigger than him and finishing the awards presentation is the most impressive thing he’s ever done in his career,” read another tweet. “The fact that Will Smith wasn’t kicked out of the Oscars and arrested for assaulting Chris Rock shows how Hollywood allows, enables, and celebrates the very worst behaviors. Workplace violence isn’t tolerated in normal industries,” commented another person.
“Regardless of what we think of the joke & all people involved, Chris Rock was assaulted at his job for doing his job. The academy failed to protect him. Will Smith (laughing 1st) was allowed to stay, they gave his ass an Oscar, laughed & celebrated him. Hollywood is full of sh*t,” read another take on the matter.
Rock had said Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, was going to be in the next “G.I Jane” movie, a reference to her lack of hair. Jada has alopecia, according to People magazine, a disease that causes hair loss. Although ABC went silent for the exchange, Smith could be heard saying “Keep my wife’s name out of your f-ing mouth.
In his awards acceptance speech, Will apologised to the Academy but not to Chris. “I’m gonna apologise to the Academy. I’m gonna apologise to my fellow nominees…art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams. But love will make you do crazy things,” he said.