People: Will Smith had ‘privately’ told Chris Rock to stop making fun of Jada

Will Smith, Jada Pinkett Smith, Chris Rock and “the slap” cover this week’s issue of People Magazine. As a gossip blogger, I just have to say this: regardless of anyone’s opinion on Will smacking Chris, that one moment made the Oscars. It made the Oscars one the most-discussed events of the year, and it made the Oscars gossip-worthy in a way they haven’t been in years. It was all incredibly dramatic and everything around The Slap is fascinating too. Like, I’m *obsessed* with hearing all of the stories about what went down during the commercial breaks. I’m obsessed with the fact that Denzel Washington was basically The Chairman, and if not for Denzel’s elder-statesman activities, everything would have turned out differently. If Denzel, Tyler Perry and Bradley Cooper had not immediately gone to Will and pulled him aside and calmed him down, I honestly believe producers probably would have removed Will. Here’s some stuff from People’s cover story:

As those on the scene at the Dolby Theater and millions of viewers at home struggled to make sense of the unprecedented situation, Denzel Washington, Tyler Perry and Bradley Cooper all got up and spoke to Smith, 53, during the next commercial break. “Denzel was really the one to defuse the situation,” an onlooker tells PEOPLE in this week’s cover story.

Backstage, producers, Academy officials and security staff moved quickly to react. “There were a lot of people, and different voices and bifurcated opinions, weighing in on what had just happened and what was the best and quickest course of action,” says a source. “People were also checking that Chris Rock was okay. Basically there were just minutes to first figure out if it was a stunt and then try to get people on the same page.”

While the LAPD confirmed that Rock declined to press charges, physically removing Smith from the auditorium “was definitely discussed seriously,” the source adds. “You can’t plan for something like this and make a split-second decision.”

So why did the actor snap? One insider says Smith has been peeved since Rock hosted the Oscars in 2016 and took a jab at Pinkett Smith, 50, for boycotting the ceremony because of the awards’ lack of diversity. “He made fun of her in his monologue, saying she can’t boycott something she wasn’t invited to,” the source says. According to another source, the two men “have been friendly, but Chris has also been making fun of Jada for years. At first Will used to laugh about it, but it really bothered Jada. Will has privately told Chris before to stop making fun of her, and that’s why this night escalated.” (A rep for Rock denies this.)

Smith also wrote in his recent memoir about grappling with the legacy of his father’s violence toward his mother. “Will is a great guy, but he grew up in a home filled with anger and alcoholism,” says a source. “He has lots of emotional baggage, and certain things set him off. He loves Jada very much through years of ups and downs. No matter what, Will loves and protects his family.”

After the ceremony Smith and Rock went their separate ways. Rock attended Guy Oseary’s afterparty, where he was reportedly consoled by Sykes and Sacha Baron Cohen; Smith briefly attended Vanity Fair’s soiree along with Pinkett Smith and kids Willow, Trey and Jaden (who tweeted “And That’s How We Do It” after his dad’s win).

As for the fallout in Hollywood, insiders think Smith will have to continue to do damage control. “He’s regarded with enormous respect,” says one. “He has worked hard, and he championed this project, which is an extraordinary story, and his portrayal is Oscar-worthy. But this taints everything, and that’s unfortunate. To see that display of behavior on the global stage… That’s what he will be remembered for.”

[From People]

Again, Denzel’s importance here cannot be understated. Variety’s behind-the-scenes account stressed this too, although in the Variety story, I was definitely left with the impression that Oscar producers didn’t know what the hell to do. Everyone was following Denzel’s lead, and producers were like “well, Denzel has it covered.” Think about how important it was within the room too, to see Denzel pull Will aside and calmly speak to Will. It was a signal to all of the celebrities and industry folks that Denzel still has Will’s back. It was also a signal that Black Hollywood will handle this situation in-house. Also: I totally believe that Will and Chris have had beef before, that this incident didn’t come out of nowhere.

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Cover courtesy of People, additional photos courtesy of Getty.

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164 Responses to “People: Will Smith had ‘privately’ told Chris Rock to stop making fun of Jada”

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  1. Lisbeth says:

    He should have punched him privately, too.

    • Desdemona says:

      This…. Now it’s damage control…

    • Mrazi says:

      Chris Rock should have made the joke privately too then.

      • Ang says:

        The thing is though, if he didn’t overreact, everyone would have forgotten about the joke shortly after. Now, EVERYONE will remember it FOREVER. If he dealt with it privately no one would even be taking about it. He essentially made the situation, along with her humiliation and the joke, live on forever.

      • Mrazi says:

        @Ang, I disagree, Will was right to handle this publicly, in the exact same arena it was served to Jada. The place he went wrong was that he got physical. Not sure why its okay to target someone publicly and then get censored privately. Chris Rock would have just set his sights on someone else and this type of behavior would never stop.

    • Jess says:

      Chris Rock humiliated Jada publicly twice so he slapped him publicly.

      You’re saying it’s ok for violence in private. To me the trashing of Jada was public so the consequences are public.

      • Sandii says:

        People did not respond well to the joke. Chris Rock would have gotten a lot more backlash for his shitty joke if Will just had glared at him.

      • Agirlandherdogs says:

        Chris Rock would have gotten a lot more backlash for his joke if Will and Jada had simply used their various platforms to speak out about why his joke was an issue, turning Rock into a bully instead of a victim.

      • Ally says:

        It’s humiliating to say jada wasn’t invited to the Oscars in ‘16…? I thought it was hilarious. Raising hell and not making the cut? She’s never been famous enough on her own to be invited to anything consistently.

      • Moxylady says:

        On her show, Jada and Will talked about a birthday party he threw for her that was actually all about HIM.
        Jada was horribly insulted and Will made it all about him. If he had gotten up and hugged her, or gone over to her to comfort her or offer support – that would have been supporting HER. And it would have made this much worse for Chris Rock. He had the forethought to use an open hand. It seems like he should have thought to comfort his wife.

    • Nicole says:

      This is what I’ve been saying from the get. Culturally, we don’t air our dirty laundry in public. I am frankly surprised that Will didn’t do something later.

    • Meg says:

      Why? Chris ridiculed Jada’s looks publicly?

    • AlpineWitch says:

      I know I’m gonna be roasted for this, because this story made me leave my self righteous high horse at the door…
      It’s also my first time commenting on this issue but Chris Rock has ‘punched down’ in his comedy for years, I cannot stand him anymore and it’s not the first time I’ve been tempted to slap the screen.

      Thank God it was Will Smith and not me on that stage, or I would have slapped him on the other side too 🤣
      I’ll see myself out now….

      • Ronaldinhio says:

        I agree
        This was reasonable self defence to aggressions aimed at Jada when he felt he was in complete control of her
        the Oscars must have agreed his set – agreed this action
        often jokes are simply indirect or disguised aggression
        It was just a joke – covers every type of cruelty bullying and ism going

  2. Noki says:

    Chris Rock had mentioned Jada before in a 2016 Oscar monologue joke. It was another crude joke that also involved Rihanna. The way Jada looked at him after (by his standards) tame joke ,maybe she was not in the mood to be brought up again.

    • BABSORIG says:

      The 2016 monologue is the one that involved Rihanna, please tell us when exactly Chris joke mentioned Jada Pinkett, other that 2016. And Jada Smith had not been invited to the Oscar’s so her carrying on about boycotting them was just absurd given the fact that she wasn’t even invited to begin with.

      • Jules says:

        To basically tell Jada that she is not important enough to make a political stand is honestly disgusting because guess what, that’s exactly why OscarsSoWhite was happening in the first place, because Black actors, directors and other film artists were always treated like “less than” opposed to their white colleagues.

        To stand on that stage and go after a Black woman who fights for more equality is a big deal, and to use the same stage years later to go after her again – without any need because he was introducing a documentary award that had nothing to do with her – is not a coincidence, it is a choice.

  3. ktate says:

    That’s why I ride with u Kaiser!!! This is the best take on “The Slap” that’s on the internet rn. All points make sense and no matter what people are saying about this not being a “black vs white” thing, it would have def been a larger scandal had Denzel and others not stepped in.

    • PaulaH says:

      Seriously, Kaiser’s take should be read by EVERYONE so that maybe all the silly comments coming out from celebrities would stop. The reason this thing continues to be a big story is because the celebrities want stop talking about it and going on the record with their opinions all while forgetting the skeletons in their own closets. Denzel has always been a class act, so I’m not surprised that he was the voice of reason.

      • Can't says:

        I love how Jada posted, “this is the season for healing. I’m here for it”. I mean, how long could Chris go on bullying Jada? The public defamation reached critical levels. This loud smack- is an alarm re the casual treatment of women as punching bags. Ideally we’d like to see NO violence- yet most “pacifists” have been the biggest attackers on the internet. Tis the Season the examine overt & covert violence. Maybe tis the season to heal?

  4. TheOriginalMia says:

    Chris Rock is just lying. He knows damn well he’s been punching down on Jada for years. Why single her out? I’ve asked if she turned him down or something? It makes no sense.

    I do believe the producers had no idea what to do and followed Denzel’s lead. There is a hierarchy and Chris isn’t as high on that ladder as Denzel & Will. Do they remove Will or let the evening ride out, keeping the two apart? Everyone knew Will had the best chance to win Best Actor. Do they remove him, knowing the optics of not allowing his historic win to have its prominence? Especially with the knowledge of #Oscarssowhite, abusers feted and celebrated for their wins, the Green Book, and the sad debacle of Chadwick Boseman’s family being invited and centered only to watch him lose to Anthony Hopkins. All of that swirling around backstage and a decision had to be made quickly.

    • AnneL says:

      Chris Rock is lying about what? He hasn’t said anything about the incident, has he? Yes, he’s been making jokes about her and he kept doing it even though Will asked him to stop. I think he should have stopped and not kept pushing, but he would hardly be the first comic to plow ahead like that. I don’t approve of the joke, but that doesn’t make him a liar.

      I totally agree with the rest of your post. They followed Denzel’s lead, let him step in and diffuse the situation. They had a lot of thorny matters to consider in a matter of minutes and made the call to let him stay and accept the award. The speech was awkward to watch, but I understand why they made the call.

      That said, Chris Rock being lower on the hierarchy doesn’t mean it’s OK for a higher-up to smack him. That’s abuse of power and privilege.

      • TheOriginalMia says:

        Chris Rock’s people said he hadn’t made any comments about Jada. He had. Repeatedly. Therefore, he & they (because they represent him) are lying. If Will & his people had asked him to stop, then this wasn’t an one-off incident. This is and has been a sore point that was addressed and ignored.

        And where did I say CR being lower in hierarchy made the slap okay? I said it shaped how the situation was handled. The producers looked to Denzel and took into account what Will’s win meant for the show.

      • Catlady says:

        @TheOriginalMia Chris Rock’s people said he never had a conversation with Will Smith about Jada jokes. Frankly, I believe Rock. Smith is doing damage control and trying to put the responsibility for his actions on Rock. As for Denzel diffusing the situation, that’s nice, but Smith should have been immediately escorted from the building. It wasn’t a tough call.

      • kirk says:

        The Original Mia – Your take makes sense. Squandered some time yesterday re-reviewing stuff Chris Rock (who I used to adore) has said about women and came to new realizations.
        1. Chris Rock w/b ok. Seems like he’s got whole new right wing white guy following and will continue to belittle women, esp black women. Will he continue to dunk on Jada? Used to think he was smart, but…
        2. Have learned CR Good Hair is a ‘mock’umentary.
        3. Will & Jada Smith w/b ok. Academy might punish Will in some way, but doubtful they’ll take Oscar away. (Harvey Weinstein still has his.)
        4. Academy will probly miss the point of After Action Review and make it all about punishing Will Smith. Howard Stern’s security guy Ronnie said poor security situation should never have happened and he’d always ensured nobody had access to Howard while he was on America’s Got Talent. The people who thought it would be cool to let Seth Macfarlane sing about actresses boobs in films will screw up.

      • Fabiola says:

        If you don’t want to be made fun of and are so sensitive then don’t attend any shows. Get out of the entertainment world and go hide in your house. Comedians are gonna roast you. It’s part of being in the entertainment world. I hope they keep making fun of Will. He’s a toddler that can’t control himself.

      • serena says:

        @Catlady, Rock already made fun of Jada in 2016 and it’s everywhere so no, Chris Rock and his enturage lied. And I have no problems believing it happened other times too.

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ Fabiola, how is Jada suffering from a medical condition justification for the cruel joke that Chris made at HER expense?????? WHY should Jada hide at home??! Jada has EVERY right to attend and go to any public facility in the world without having to SUFFER from the misogynistic likes of Chris Rock or whomever drags her, or any other woman for that matter, down???

        Women have been pushed down, pulled apart, silenced and told that we are not WORTHY of having a place at the table for centuries, but you are telling us that we should stay home IF we won’t subject ourselves to cruelty and just take it????

      • Fiona Fang says:

        @Fabiola – What a terrible thing to say. For every racist, sexist jokes I did not endure, 99% of the time the “joker” always told me to lighten up, don’t be so serious, it’s just a joke, etc.

        And it wasn’t a roast. If it was, Chris Rock should have directed his jokes at Will Smith, the nominee and the movie star, not his wife.

      • SourcesclosetoKate says:

        @catlady “Chris Rock’s people said he never had a conversation with Will Smith about Jada jokes”. If this is true, for me Will is creating more damage. His people seem to be going after any and everyone, seems like Will crafted his image for Hollywood approval rather than just living life. It makes him seem fake and methodical to me

    • aftershocks says:

      @TheOriginalMia: “I do believe the producers had no idea what to do…”

      For starters, the producers should never have invited Chris Rock to come on stage 10 minutes before the Best Actor award was announced, so he could start ad-libbing negative jokes against Jada and Will. I don’t see how anyone, including the Oscar producers, could forget Chris Rock’s crude joke against Jada involving Rihanna at the 2016 Oscars.

      At least one additional public attack by Chris against Jada has been reported. Plus, Chris has mocked Will on social media for remaining friendly with his first wife (with whom Will shares an older son)!

      It was a courageous stand for Jada and Will to support the #OscarsSoWhite protest in 2016. That protest had an impact and it bore fruit for more inclusiveness. Meanwhile, Chris Rock to me is a sell-out who caters to the Establishment. Not to mention Rock’s misogyny and misogynoir.

  5. ThatsNotOkay says:

    So the plot thickens. My original take was–why did this have to go down in public? Now, if it’s true that in private Rock was told to keep Jada’s name out his fucken mouth, I’m less bothered and will return to “liking” memes.

    • BabsORIG says:

      This claim comes after 3 days of bad publicity for Will Smith and his camp fearing that his Oscar is in danger (which I honestly doubt will happen, he won that Oscar fair and square and it has absolutely nothing to do with his abhorrent violent attack on Chris Rock ). Will Smith himself never mentioned these prior warnings even in his own non-apology, he said the reason he attacked and beat up Chris Rock was because Chris Rock “joked about Jada Pinkett medical condition”. Now that that reason is having pushback on, with people mentioning alopecia is treatable and that Chris Rock joke was about GI Jane and had nothing to do with Jada Pinkett alopecia, and Chris people stating he had no knowledge of Jada Pinkett alopecia, now suddenly ….Will Smith told Chris Rock privately to stop making Jada jokes? Damage control at its finest. And Will Smith and his camp/fans can’t really point to the “many” jokes that Chris Rock has made about Jada Pinkett, the only one you hear is the one he made during his monologue in 2016. And no one is really coming out and saying that Chris Rock just stated a fact that Jada Pinkett had not been invited to the Oscars so her boycotting them was a moot point, they only going on and on about how she was made fun of in 2016 by the big bad Chris Rock etc etc, its just ridiculous.

      • Sue E Generis says:

        Sorry, while I think Will Smith’s actions were wrong, let’s not exaggerate an already dramatic incident. He did not ‘attack and beat up’ Chris Rock. He slapped him. All violence is wrong, but there’s a world of difference between slapping someone once when provoked, and ‘attacking and beating them up’.

      • BabsORIG says:

        @Sue, aren’t you accusing me of the same exact thing you doing? Will Smith attack on Chris Rock was “just a slap”? And no respectfully disagree, there’s no variations in violence, violence is violence is violence. And whichever way you choose to slice it, Will Smith DID attack and beat up on Chris Rock. And Will Smith attacked Chris Rock because he was provoked? How was he provoked?

      • ThatsNotOkay says:

        I guarantee most aren’t going to like this, but I’m going to say it anyway:

        You can slap whomever you want and walk away scot-free. The truth is, in most states in the United States, a slap is not considered an assault with intent to harm. If you are not injured to the extent that you have to go the the doctor, you’re pretty much going to get away with it (even if you’re initially arrested). Just putting this all in perspective. Will Smith didn’t punch the guy, and maybe he knew somehow that to do so would cause himself a world of hurt, so to speak. But I’m just spitting facts here. We are technically legally allowed to slap people (as long as we don’t leave or intend to leave evidence of injury). Should we is a different story.

      • susan says:

        This is a terrible take. “Abhorrent, violent attack” Really? A b*tchslap is a b*tchslap.

        Chris Rock is an assh*le who makes his living punching down on black women, IMO MFer had it coming. You clearly have a side in this and it’s not #TeamJada, who’s the only one deserving of sympathy.

      • BABSORIG says:

        @Susan, actually I don’t even like Chris Rock so whatever you claiming is not true about me. There were numerous lawyers in the auditorium that said the slap was assault and battery. Also I listened to 3 lawyers that stated the same fact so the slapping is ok legally is just …. out there. And Jada Pinket is not a victim, alopecia or no alopecia. Regardless of Chris Rock history of personal jokes, Jada Pinkett was just a target of a GI Jane joke period. Chris Rock is the victim of violence in all this, and Will Smith made sure of cementing that fact in history.

      • aftershocks says:

        @BabsORIG, Chris Rock’s ‘jokes’ against Jada and Will are very problematic. Articles have been written detailing the multiple (at least three) public attacks against Jada, that Chris has made.

        As well, it does NOT matter whether Chris Rock knew about Jada’s alopecia or not. He was in the wrong saying anything with a hint of negative nastiness about Jada or Will in that moment. He was there to present a best documentary award, not there to behave as a host making opening gags! He was off script and out of line.

        If you believe that Will never said anything privately to Chris before about ceasing his behavior against Jada, then why do you believe Chris when he says that he didn’t know about Jada’s alopecia? Once again, whether Chris knew or not (and I believe he did), his past crude jokes should have had him keeping his mouth zipped in regard to Jada and Will, especially in that moment.

  6. Miss Margo says:

    Nah. Will Smith should be on meds. He has a mental health issue. I think he’s trash and won’t ever watch his stuff again. What a child.

    • MellyMel says:

      Mental health issue? Cause he slapped someone? Like are you okay??

      • Fabiola says:

        He obviously has issues. It’s not normal behavior for an adult to throw a hissy fit and assault someone. Also, who is he to tell Chris what jokes he can make.

      • serena says:

        @Fabiola They’re not jokes when they hurt someone else.

        @MissMargo “Meds and mental heath issue, trash”.. all because he lost his temper and slapped (it was just a slap, he didn’t murder him, y’all) someone? Jesus..

    • MGD says:

      Miss Margo, I am happy that your opinion holds no more weight than anyone else’s. Only a certified clinician with the requisite education and experience AND one who has had therapy or counseling sessions with Will Smith, can diagnose him. You are not one, so your comment about his mental health and medication ought to fall on deaf ears.
      What a mess!

    • BabsORIG says:

      Miss Margo, I completely agree with you, Will Smith is trash, all is capital letters.

    • Call_me_AL says:

      Miss Margo, wow. Do you have any other behavior samples to support your opinion of Will as “trash”?
      Judging someone for rash behavior in a moment when he is under extreme pressure is way harsh, Ty. A grown man mocked his wife and the mother of his children in front of the world. The whole thing has been actually really upsetting to a lot of people, and I really wish that Will hadn’t responded physically, but he didn’t start it. Chris did. How can we put all the onus on Will to respond perfectly to such an impossible situation?
      I don’t deign to have any answers about how the situation should have been handled, but I know not to call people TRASH who react poorly to being provoked by a bully and publicly humiliated.
      “You’re the only trash here I see.” –Emmylou Harris

      • Erinn says:

        Guess it depends on where you think Scientologists fall on the trash scale.

        You don’t typically help fund a school that teaches L Ron Hubbard garbage like dianetics if you aren’t a Scientologist. Dianetics is also big on public shows of superiority … like how this all happened, or how Tom Cruise yelled at the staff working on his movie. They deny they’re involved with the cult buuuuut… normal non Scientologists don’t fund schools teaching dianetics.

  7. grabbyhands says:

    That’s what I was saying in the other thread too –

    Not only has Chris Rock gone after her before, he changed the GI Jane joke to go after her specifically because apparently that was not how it was written. When does Chris Rock have to apologize to HER?

    There were so many other people he could have taken this piss out of that night, a whole room full of people to punch up on and he chose her in a very personal way. Screw Chris Rock.

    • kgeo says:

      Exactly. I keep seeing this sentiment that now comedians will have to worry about getting assaulted if someone doesn’t like your joke. You know what? If your jokes are so poorly researched that you don’t know you’re making fun of someone’s illness, then you suck. Illness aside, the CROWN act just passed through saying specifically people couldn’t be discriminated against for having specifically black hair styles. They had to pass an act to stop discrimination against black people based on their hair!! Black women’s hair has been a sensitive issue for a long time. Maybe just stay away from the topic all together, Chris.

      • Fabiola says:

        Alopecia is not an illness. It’s just means someone is losing their hair. I have it too but I do not consider myself to have an illness or a disability. If she had cancer and lost her hair from chemo is one thing but hair loss happens to millions of people. It sucks but that’s life. People need to save their tears for people that actually have a real Illness and are in pain.

      • MariaS says:

        Fabiola, alopecia is an autoimmune disorder so it is very much an illness. Either you don’t have it or you are curiously uninformed about a condition you claim to have.

    • Persephone says:

      Thank you!!!!!! My sentiments exactly.

      • BothSidesNow says:

        @ MariaS, thank you!!! It IS an autoimmune condition and it’s not just someone’s hair falling out!!

      • Selina Not Kyle says:

        And my thing is this: why is making fun of someone’s physical appearance still considered a joke? It’s very high school and to me shows Chris’ elementary talent. What if Jada had cancer, how will this fly? Imagine if Chadwick (God rest his soul) was in the audience at the time when he had lost a lot of weight and Chris joked about his weight, how would that feel? I’d probably want to fight Chris too if I were a family member. Bottom line is we need to stop using peoples physical appearance as cheap jokes. You never know what they are going through and if an illness is physically manifesting. Will should have responded differently or at least got in Chris’ face privately- but it’ seems he’s already done that

    • HelloDolly! says:

      Yes, I absolutely believe Rock has a beef with them and knew what he was doing. And considering Smith has spent decades in the public eye as an adult without any sign of violence, my money is on Rock repeatedly, passive-aggressively bullying Will and Jada.

      While I don’t condone Smith’s behavior, I sympathize. There is a sexist man I work with who dislikes me because I correct his sexism, and he will take any chance he gets to say passive aggressive, negative things about me or to me. Because of this, he is the only person who can get me riled up with anger, more so than usual.

  8. Jess says:

    I’m fascinated by the Denzel-ness of it all too. I love that he stepped up. But what was Cooper doing? Why was he in the mix at all?

    • AnneL says:

      Yes, the Denzel thing makes sense but Cooper seems so random! Are they close?

    • StellainNH says:

      I am impressed with Denzel. He must be a big influence in the backgrounds that the public doesn’t see. Bradley Cooper throws me off because I have never been impressed by him.

      • Pix says:

        I want to know what Bradley Cooper said to Will. He’s not been mentioned too much in the aftermath and I’m fascinated. The pictures of the two of them talking are so tender. Bradley’s words must have been powerful.

    • Michael says:

      I think Bradley Cooper is part of Will Smith’s friend group. He hangs out with a lot of black celebs low-key. Dave Chapelle used to make jokes about being at parties with nothing but black celebs and Bradley Cooper

    • MissMarirose says:

      That’s what I was wondering too. It seems like there’s still something missing in this story.

      There were quite a few celebrities who were consoling Will and Jada during commercial breaks. It wasn’t just Denzel, Tyler, and Bradley. (A Variety reporter was tweeting videos of what was going on that night.) Nicole Kidman went over and hugged Will, as did Ariana DeBose after she returned from the press room. It wasn’t just Black celebrities.

      I think they know something that hasn’t come out yet.

    • PaulaH says:

      IMO, Will’s friend knew he was pretty upset to take that level of action. Regardless Bradly Cooper sounds like a good guy. Didn’t judge his friend and pretend he didn’t know him. Just provided support.

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ Jess, Denzel has always been a class act in my eyes!!! He is such a brilliant human being that deserves so much applause for his contribution in the arts and in the world, as a whole. I don’t think I have read or seen him disrespect anyone in my lifetime!!

  9. Lili says:

    I’m still of the opinion that the GI jane joke was quite layered and very cruel, and a lot of people get it, going by the commentary of them having an open marriage and talk about their life freely. the same way we say a woman has the right to wear what ever she likes with out being attacked and not to victim shame her. the same should apply to Jada. that joke was a 2 point punchdown. IMO

  10. EduBois says:

    Then Smith could have easily taken this private. He and his people putting their excuse making machine to work! And folks are into it!!

    It really is disgraceful. All other winners, nominees and their films, completely overshadowed. The first time the show had a Black production team – completely overshadowed.

    • MGD says:

      This (2022) was not the first time the Academy Awards had a Black production team. In 1996 Quincy Jones was the Executive Producer of the 68th Academy Awards. In addition to Will Packer in 2022, I believe there is one other Black person or team that produced the Awards Ceremony.
      Roland Martin mentioned that person on his digital show, this week.

      • ThatsNotOkay says:

        This year was ALL black. That’s the difference.

      • BabsORIG says:

        @MGD, what is meant is that this 2022 had a lot of unprecedented diversity that should have been the discussion and celebrated right now because of their phenomenal achievement. However now all everyone is talking about is Will Smith and his attack on Chris Rock. Everyone and everything else has now been drowned out, now its all Will Smith this and Will Smith that. Personally, I think Will Smith needs to stop talking and STHU, period.

    • Anne says:

      I’m still pissed about how this took away from Summer of Soul winning best documentary. And really everything after this display of crazy.

  11. Imara219 says:

    I was fascinated by the pearl-clutching and dog whistles. I’m fascinated by how dewights are telling on themselves, and I’m equally fascinated by the microaggressions and yt supremacists jumping on this incident. It all shows how America still has a lot of work to do and it should bury respectability politics for Black Americans because the proof is that white America does not care and will dog you out at the slightest issue.

    • Persephone says:

      Yup. Hard agree.

    • Fabiola says:

      I’m not white and I’m appalled by what happened. A night that should have been about black excellence was stained by Will and his behavior. He’s so selfish. I hope he is banned and comedians keep roasting him.

      • Hawaiimainland gymrat says:

        You really should do your homework before stating especially someone that has a condition isnt a disease and just trying to blow it under the cover saying oh it’s just hair loss. From someone that has it it is a autoimmune disease for some people it starts later in life for some of us it starts right after puberty hits at 18 and it gets worse and worse. Well I don’t condone violence the one thing that’s really getting on my nerves up here is people dismissing alopecia it is a disease it causes you to lose your hair like cancer and in most cases it’s permanent and you look like Bruce willis. Let’s State the facts and not assumptions when we’re stating medical conditions just to try to justify a nasty joke made making fun of someone’s medical condition which is the same as if she had cancer and that’s the reason why she was bald it was still inappropriate and he was aware she had the condition, man people need to do better

      • ChillinginDC says:

        You been all over this thread being loud and wrong. And lying about having a condition that you claim is not a big deal.

    • Trina says:

      Yep. And I feel like today MAGA ww found this place.

    • Formerly Lithe says:

      Thank you. Really.

  12. Grass Roots says:

    It says so much that he grew up in a family where his mother was abused by his father and there was alcoholism. This could be a teaching moment to understand the impact of domestic violence and alcoholism. It dominates our society more than we realize.

    • Anonymous says:

      No idea how much of it had to do with this or if the Bradley Cooper relationship is professional or personal, but IIRC, Bradley Cooper is in recovery, and even if Will’s not, he may have attended AlAnon to process issues related to family alcoholism, so they may have crossed paths in that community.

  13. Amy Bee says:

    Of course this was brewing for a long time. Too bad Chris couldn’t resist punching down on black women for one night.

    • Sandii says:

      CR is a misogynist and especially cruel to black women. Lots of people were aware and the “joke” tanked. If Will just had screamed or glared at him Chris Rock would have gotten so much backlash. Now we have people gloryfing the slap and other people mocking and reveling in the “downfall” of a black icon. It is bad. …

    • BothSidesNow says:

      @ Amy Bee, right!! This is the MO of Chris Rock!! His misogyny runs his mouth and his cruelty!! This isn’t the first OR the last time he will make “jokes” at the expense of WOC!!

  14. Willow says:

    ‘An insider said’…’Will told Chris privately to stop joking about Jada (Rock’s rep denies this)’ I’m not going to believe an anonymous source over a named source. That whole article from People is just trying to make the Academy and Will look better. It’s obvious clean up time and Chris Rock is the one getting thrown under the bus.

    • FHMom says:

      Yes. It’s damage control. Chris Rock’s joke was in bad taste, but award shows are filled with bad, tasteless jokes. Will’s stunt ruined his nice guy image and marred the night for the other winners.

      • serena says:

        So, offensive and tastless jokes should be accepted just because ‘they should be expected’? Will still keeps his ‘nice guy image’, as you put it, for me, because one lapse in judgment or temper flare doesn’t define one person (otherwise we would all be in hell).

      • ChillinginDC says:

        Hi, Chris Rock is a lie. They legit had stories about this mess after the 2016 Oscars so yes Chris Rock did get told about keeping her name out of his mouth. He apparently tried to get with her before she got with Will Smith and after and got shut down both times. If I were Chris, I would be quiet because people are pulling receipts on his butt right now.

    • Jojo says:

      I don’t believe Will told Chris not to make jokes about Jada because if he had his first response would have been anger.It wasn’t anger.Will laughed at the joke, he didn’t just smile but he laughed.Will saw Jada’s response and then he reacted.She probably gave him a look to do something.I don’t think he assaulted Chris because he had an issue with the joke.

      • Josephina says:

        So… Will yelling twice “Keep my wife’s name out your f**king mouth!” ain’t clear enough for you to see he was visibly upset once he saw how hurt his wife was?..

        Will was fed up and riding high on emotions. It was like a damn had burst. He snapped. Chris Rock DOES DOG WOC in his jokes. There was absolutely nothing mild about the GI Jane II joke. He made fun of a WOC struggling with alopecia. Jada has been VERY OPEN about her feelings and the years long journey of humiliation, embarrassment and the resolution of losing her hair. Women are still defined by their tresses; Black women’s hair has always been used as a political tool against our likeness. I was pissed that CR tried to get reassurance from Jada that it was just a “little joke” … which is when Will raised up out of his chair and walked towards CR and slapped him… not beat him, not punch or kick or throw him to the floor.

        This country is SO comfortable defaming Black women (see prospect Ketanya Brown Jackson for SCOTUS) for centuries. I am glad Will rose to defend his wife. He said it best when he said that you can attack him but leave his wife Jada out of it.

        I will give you an example: what if it were Tom Hanks and wife Rita Wilson was bald suffering from alopecia? Would you defend Chris Rock? Would you say Tom would be wrong if he slapped Chris?

  15. intheknow says:

    I don’t support violence. But it is time people started standing up for Black women. Everyone likes to crap all over us because they expect no one to stand up for us. Everyone craps over us because no one has been standing up for us. Enough is enough. Rock is a hateful POS and a cretin. I have zero sympathy for him getting slapped.

    Team Will & Jada all the way on this issue.

  16. Toniko says:

    He forgot to send a memo to Rebel Wilson apparently.

  17. Palma says:

    My opinion still is that Will was in the wrong and tainted his moment with this action. This shows anger issues and poor self-regulation. We would criticize it in a child – there’s no excuse for violence.
    Additional points:
    1. Jada is perfectly capable to defend herself. If Will feels the need to assault someone because of a joke, he’s objectifying her and that’s toxic masculinity.
    2. The fact that Chris made fun of her in the past and Will asked him to stop is irrelevant. That’s what comedians do. You might laugh or not but it’s part of being a public figure. Plus see point above.
    3. Will could have addressed this in his speech or in the press after the ceremony. There was no need to assault Chris and it would have been more effective.
    4. Lots of people are assuming there was bad intent but there are also reports that Chris didn’t know that Jada has alopecia. Why should he know?
    5. Chris went to Will and Jada in the break, possibly to apologize to her. There are pictures of that. He just hasn’t spoken publicly. The one doing damage control is Will.
    6. This is to be taken with a grain of salt, but I read on Deuxmoi that Chris was reading the teleprompter and didn’t write that joke. He just added “I love you Jada” when he saw the joke coming. That would fit with point 2, knowing that Will wouldn’t appreciate a joke about Jada.

    • FHMom says:

      Well said. Jada’s facial expression should have been caught by the cameraman, and it would have skewered Rock for telling an unfunny, tasteless joke. No violence was necessary.

    • PaulaH says:

      1) Maybe she is perfectly capable of defending herself but she has a husband who can defend her as well. It’s called MARRIAGE
      2) Chris wasn’t there for a comedy performance. It was an awards program.
      3) This I agree with
      4) Chris has a HISTORY of degrading Black women.
      5) Of course, Will is doing damage control. Did you read his apology? He regrets his actions. He’s trying to make it right. Picture means nothing. I doubt Will and Jada could care less about Chris in that moment
      6) You should “take it with a grain of salt.” See point number 4.

    • Maria Lujan says:


    • Trina says:

      Like Rock isn’t planting shit all over the place. Deuxmoi being a case in point. That account is a mix of publicists planting shit and fan faction. I never bother with it.

      Jada can take care of herself. Sure, can’t all black women? We are all from Baltimore and the streets and take care of ourselves. We’re tough. How dare we be beloved and have male protection. That’s for white women!

    • ChillinginDC says:

      1. She’s talked about this before with Chris.
      2. I love that you all seem to think comedians doing verbal violence is cool. Where you all not just on here going off about Dave Chappelle a few months ago?
      3. Agreed.
      4. I don’t care if he knew. Here’s the thing. He’s black. He knew going after any black women about her hair was punching down and making her feel badly about himself. That’s the part that black people keep telling all of the white commenters. The Congress just had to pass legislation about black people not being discriminated about our hair.
      5. He did not aplogize to her though and it’s come out he didn’t do any type of apology. He should apologize to her. Forget Will.
      6. That website is full of crap. He add-libbed that mess which everyone has said. It was never pointed at her and he did that because he still acting salty about how dare they think they are too good to boycott the Oscars in 2016.

    • aftershocks says:

      @Palma: “I read on Deuxmoi that Chris was reading the teleprompter and didn’t write that joke. He just added “I love you Jada” when he saw the joke coming.”

      ^^ Nope. That’s incorrect. The Academy has reportedly already indicated that Chris ad-libbed the ‘joke’ against Jada. It was NOT part of the teleprompter script.

  18. Oria says:

    There is such a huge difference between verbally abusing someone (repeatedly) with intention and a sudden poorly managed emotional response, like this slap and outburst.

    This is why verbal and emotional abuse is so common; people compare it to acts of physical violence and deem it as less harmful. People are expected to “take high road”.

    I won’t judge Will for this one incident, we all make mistakes. It was terrible and should not have happened, but it’s not like he repeatedly slapped Chris and was told to not do it again but did it anyway.

    It was an uncommon lapse, and a moment where response turned to reaction.

    We should have more sympathy for people who come from abusive childhoods like Will. And we should be careful about how we judge others.

    Will apologized and I feel his sincerity.
    He knows this was bad and he will never do it again. I trust that. Chris Rock on the other hand doesn’t seem to evolve one bit and I’m waiting to hear him apologize to Jada. The phrase “it was just a joke” is gaslighting and harmful, and if comedians have to make fun of people’s illness or appearance to be funny they should find another job. Comedians right to joke about whatever they want is never more important than someone’s feelings. And if people have the impression we as a society is getting more sensitive I say, GOOD. That means we are evolving and learning how to be empathetic, kind and loving to one another. We don’t have to stick to harmful customs just because it’s been done for generations. Let’s grow from this.

    • TheOriginalMia says:

      The people minimizing the verbal abuse is appalling. We just rid ourselves of a troll, who was elevated to the highest position in this country. Who regularly denigrated people to the point most are still recovering from PTSD due to the hateful, toxic atmosphere he created and nurtured, but Jada should be okay with this tame joke and be proud to be compare to GI Jane. Ugh, GMAB.

      • Beech says:

        The only time I missed the Oscars! Will Smith with his glorious career, the very pinnacle on the night of the Oscars and then this! The vagaries of the human condition.

      • BabsORIG says:

        Its ironic how minimizing “verbal abuse” is posted on and upsetting to some and how it shouldn’t be excused, yet the same posts are minimizing, excusing and rationalizing Will Smith attack on Chris Rock and/or calling it “just a simple slap” etc, SMH

    • SnarcasmQueen says:

      This is so very well said. Verbal abuse is so very damaging.

    • Palma says:

      1) Marriage means supporting each other indeed, it doesn’t mean assaulting people that aggravates our spouse. There are other acceptable behaviours to do that.
      2) There were many comedians telling jokes in that award show. There are always jokes in an award show. You might like them or not but that’s a fact
      5) I read Will’s apology and I wiahe he had said that when he picked up his award instead of trying to justify what he did. The written apology was surely done after consulting his team. And if we are going to assume he’s sincere there, why assume that Chris didn’t apologize to them when he came to them during the break?

      Verbal abuse is damaging but also physical violence and we can explain this as the result of Will’s upbringing with a violent father but not justify it because that would mean that all abusers that were also abused as children are not at fault.
      I liked Will a lot and I’m so disappointed in this reaction. If you do this in public, what can you do in private?

      • PaulaH says:

        @Palma: Please review my response again. Also, if you ever been truly loved and loved someone truly….you would understand.

    • serena says:

      I wholeheartedly agree and wish I could upvote this comment.

  19. MsIam says:

    Chris Rock is an ass.

  20. intheknow says:

    The psychological violence that Black Women suffer every single day, several times a day…with little to no support. There aren’t enough therapists out there to help us manuevre (sp) this vicious world. Too many people (including Black men like Chris) give the world the authorization to hurt us, use everything including our hair to beat us down. My G-D, a law was just passed to prevent hair discrimination against Black Women. What other race requires this??? Hair grows out of our heads the way it grows. Zero control. Hair that white women and other races copy – but we are beaten down for it. I don’t want to hear ANY excuses from anyone.

    Everyone has a break point and clearly Will was at his. We don’t know the psychological that Jada could be suffering. What if she were suicidal?? What if it was THAT ONE comment from Chris that could have caused her to harm herself??? Yeah, I don’t want to fkging hear anymore excuses. Maybe Will knew that Jada was at a desperate point and he did what he had to do.

    You can go kick rocks with any and all excuses and this includes any Black person who are putting on a show so white people will like them by supporting Chris Rock.

    Why do people feel the slap is more violent than the verbal abuse and verbal assault. We have people who are harming themselves or who consider harming themselves due to words said to them and about them. Give your heads a shake. What some of you fear is that you can’t beat up on Black Women anymore and you might be held accountable.

    • Taenerys says:

      I cried when I read your comment, and I had clarity on why I’ve been so sad since Sunday. I wish Chris was not slapped but I felt he abused Jada and legit put thousands of black women at risk. I wish Will found a different way to handle it. And my heart broke for Jada. I’m praying healing for everyone.

      To the non black women who just don’t get it – why this was a violent but tender act, how Will was probably defending his Mom and his wife from black men who hurt them, how we saw a grown man, but it was the little boy that actually acted, please listen.

      This was an an act of great love and protection for Jada specifically, but black women too.

      Wish it could have happened differently though.

      May everyone heal. May all good things come.

      • Palma says:

        I hear all this but violence is not an act of love, never. It’s toxic masculinity.
        There’s an interesting video on this in YouTube by Dr. Grande.

      • Nina says:

        This is how I feel. I’m not black but a WOC and I read wills account of how he felt like such a coward for not standing up to his dad when his dad abused his mom. I see a little boy reacting and protecting his wife and trying to make up for the time he didn’t as a child. And it was wrong but I also could see that he was reacting from a very hurt place. I hope he’s getting some help to resolve these demons. We all have our childhood wounds.

      • Trina says:

        Nah you haven’t heard a thing Palma.

    • Trina says:

      Thank you intheknow. I 100% support your comment. My mom is darker-skinned than me and she has some stories. The shit she has had done to her. I do too, but I do benefit somewhat from being biracial and lighter-skinned than she is.

    • RealOne says:

      Chris Rock was verbally and emotionally abusive to Jada with his disrespectful jokes about Jada over the years, so why is that ok? Chris Rock needs to apologize to Jada period. Emotional and verbal abuse is worse than physical abuse, because you get traumatized for the rest of your life every time you think about it.

  21. MangoAngelesque says:

    I’ll have to be the dissenting voice: “The Slap” is not what “made” these Oscars for me.

    What made these Oscars was the incredibly sweet interaction between Liza Minnelli and Lady Gaga while presenting Best Picture, AFTER all the Chris/Will BS.

    That’s the kind of thing that should be getting virtual ink, but instead it’s all about two men acting badly, instead of two women being beautiful towards each other.

    • ArtMaven says:

      Yes this. Thank you.

      And if it takes an assault onstage to make people talk about the Oscars again, the Academy show producers have completely jumped the shark. Which they have.

    • LightPurple says:

      Thank you. the sweet interaction between LIza and Gaga; the joy of Troy Kotsur winning his Oscar and Yuh-Jung Youn’s glee at presenting it to him; Questlove’s beautiful acceptance speech about his parents and his mother’s emotional response to it, immediately after the BS. These are the things I will remember from these Oscars.

    • Stella says:

      So much this. People are all on their high horse right now about physical violence and toxic masculinity. But what do they think Chris Rock was being? A violent, toxic bully with a microphone. For them psychological and emotional violence is fine, I guess, because is invisible. Being bullied and also having to be the bigger person is adding insult to injury.
      Also, anger and violence have a place in our psyches and in our lives, so saying that ” violence is never ok” is not just virtue signaling but also factually wrong. Anger and violence are as valid as other emotions and can be useful tools to set limits on people who violate our (or our family’s) integrity, be it physical, emotional, or psychological. Sometimes a slap (let’s stop acting like he shot him dead, please) is exactly what someone else needs to understand that enough is enough, that messing with us in not allowed. No one has to take repeated “jokes” that are hurtful and damaging. Chris Rock is a bully who picked on the most picked on demographic in a room full of rich straight white dudes to make them laugh. He is a violent asshole but that is being overlooked because he was “just being funny” or “doing his job” and Will snapped. Chris Rock is a grown man knowingly hurting an entire community for laughs.
      Any normal, good at self-regulating person will snap when pushed around enough. If everyone is so concerned about the mental health of those involved, then go ahead and question Chris’, who has an uncontrollable need to make fun of this particular woman whenever he gets on a stage.
      And finally, as someone who has extensive experience with bullies, I would bet money that he’s either had a crush on Jada forever and has been rejected or is deeply jealous of Will (or both!), knew this was their night and took his shot at ruining it the only way he knew how: with a “harmless little joke.”

  22. Otaku fairy says:

    Hopefully women of color in particular will be shown the same understanding Will Smith is being shown by some when having pissed, yet *slap-free* reactions to misogyny in the future. We’re still behind when it comes to who must ‘watch how they come across’ by prioritizing the fee-fees of the trad causing offense, and who doesn’t have to, inside and outside of Hollywood. It’s definitely something to monitor.

    A lot of the other reactions Will Smith is getting are OTT though. The people he’s being compared to, the conservatives jumping on it- all so racist. And that is 100% on them, not on Will. It’s not like these people just suddenly developed these attitudes after the slap. They’ve held this bigotry for a long time, and should not be encouraged to capitalize on moments like this by shifting the blame for it onto their targets.

  23. eb says:

    SM comments are not scientific polls and shouldn’t be considered representative of demographic opinion. A lot of people are getting mad about something that is not necessarily real.

  24. Merricat says:

    Comedy needs to evolve beyond making fun of people for things they can’t control. There are plenty of comedians who know how to get laughs without punching down, but there are many more who either don’t have the talent or don’t have the devotion to well-crafted material.

  25. Lightpurple says:

    There has been animosity between Jada and Chris for years. He was the first Black man to host the Oscars solo (Whoopi was the first Black woman to go it alone) and Jada called for a boycott of the show that year. They have been sniping at each other since.

    None of that excuses Will Smith resorting to violence.

    • MsIam says:

      I’m quite sure Will regrets it happening and would take it back if he could. But given the history, Chris should have kept Jada’s name out of his mouth. People keep saying “Well he just compared her to GI Jane!” . That’s all he got a chance to say before Will clocked his ass. Who knows what else he would have said. But I’m sure Chris is happy to be relevant again.

    • Fabiola says:

      I’d like to see if Will would have this same energy for someone that wasn’t smaller than him. If the Rock would have made this joke would he have the nerve to slap him. Will is a little bitch to attack someone smaller than him and sucker slap them.

      • MsIam says:

        I’ve never heard the Rock insult someone’s wife publicly. He’s had issues with coworkers but never just gone in on their spouses. I’ve also seen the Rock apologize publicly before too. Not saying he’s perfect, but he’s not a weasel like Chris.

      • Josephina says:

        I do not know many men, comedian or not, who would dare insult a man’s wife, outside of Donald Trump, call it a joke, and not receive some sort of retaliation.

        I think the issue is America does not expect anyone to defend the Black woman. It’s open season all year long per usual. For most, Will defending his wife seemed as unusual behavior. IMO he had no choice but to defend his life partner and mother of his children.

  26. ArtMaven says:

    If this happened in your neighbor’s house, Will probably would have been arrested. It’s not that deep. It’s different rules for rich celebs and the show’s producers.

    • kirk says:

      I would hope that my neighbors wouldn’t be so rash as to arrest someone over a slap, given overcrowded jails and my desire for police to spend time on more serious problems.

      • ArtMaven says:

        Assault is a serious act and problem. People deal with the consequences of it every day.

    • FeatherDuk says:

      +1, plus my neighbors are all judges, lawyers, and business people. There would also be a lawsuit. You don’t slap the performer for performing.

      • Trina says:

        Yeah that’s how white people handle their shit. Call the police. Get their high-priced attorneys on the horn. We know. Trump alone has sued more people than everyone here put together has met.

  27. Karen says:

    Also, “he has a mental health issue so he’s trash?” Nice.

  28. Anne says:

    The new episode of Smartless with David Spade did some foreshadowing of this debacle. It was taped before the Oscar’s. Spade and Rock are really good friends and when he was discussing Rock with the pod hosts (Will Arnett, Jason Bateman and Sean Hayes) he said that Rock made fun of people/stars in his audience all the time and how awkward that can get. Anyway, It’s an hilarious episode and a great podcast.

    And please if some assistant film editor had rushed the stage and attacked the presenter there would have been security swarming the stage and the person dragged out. This was about famous movie star and Academy not wanting to piss off famous movie star. Now Chris Rock may be angry about lack of Academy security and wouldn’t be surprised if he lashes out (sues?) at the academy.

    • Fabiola says:

      Chris should file a complaint against the academy for not protecting him. People should not be allowed to rush into the stage like that.

      • Trina says:

        Chris should file a lawsuit! Get one of Trump’s attorneys on the phone for me now! Where is the manager!

    • PaulaH says:

      Next time Chris will leave his comedy performance for one of his shows instead of attacking someone who attending the awards to support her husband. Can you imagine Chris attacking the spouse of any of the other nominees?

  29. Mabs A'Mabbin says:

    I too believe this has been percolating on the back burner for some time. Little jabs here, little jabs there, and CR has a loud irreverent mouth as does so many comedians. They make their living on insults. But I’m perfectly fine with social media dishing out some responsibility and consequences. Comedy has a right to say whatever it thinks will garner laughter, and the world will react. I think if Will had used his fist instead of his palm, we’d be having a global meltdown. I personally can’t stand CR. His voice makes me insane.

  30. Lululu says:

    I think both men were wrong.

    Once things cool down, Jada absolutely should bring Chris and Will on RTT. Chris should apologize to Jada and make a donation to the Alopecia foundation. Will should apologize to Chris and they should discuss comedy and it’s limits and what Will now wishes he had done instead. And maybe also make a donation to a foundation that serves young black men in some way, or people with NVLD.

    I’ve never seen RTT, but that I would watch. I think something good can still come from this, but these guys are going to have to dig pretty deep. I think they’re both capable of that though.

    • Deering24 says:

      Agreed—they both behaved like idiots. And for what? A cheap non-funny laugh? Machismo showing-off? Neither goal was worth the humiliation they brought on themselves.

  31. Eggbert says:

    Is no one bringing up the fact that CR hasn’t publicly apologized to Jada?!

    • MsIam says:

      No, remember “He’s a comedian!”. He can be an @sshole and its perfectly fine, especially when its a black woman.

  32. Eloisa says:

    “Oscar producers didn’t know what the hell to do…” with the entirely show, terrible.

    Will lost his composure over Jada’s reaction to the jokes, at first he laughed. But very poorly handled all, Chris is an idiot who was banned from the Oscars for years after the jokes he made to Jude Law, remember it? Anyway, with the power of the Smiths they could have waited for WS’s speech to put him in his place or the next day and pulled the strings to veto Rock and make him look like the jerk he is using the media to do so without tarnishing the moment of the other artists and Will himself.

    Summer of Soul won and deserved enjoyed the moment in peace and with joy, it is a great documental and one of the few winners that i liked it.

    • Hawaiimainland gymrat says:

      As I said it previously I don’t condone violence however Chris Rock has a known history of his sexist and open downput black women and women of color and quite frankly we are freaking tired of it. He made a mockumentary, cuz it wasn’t a documentary about good hair in relations to the journey of black women’s hair and some of the same bullcrap we currently face today. It’s one thing when a comedian makes jokes and jokes about all different types of material which they usually do fine. But he has a consistent history of constantly saying negative things and down putting women of color whether it’s over their hair etc as if we don’t get enough of that b******* and the real world that’s why the laws were just passed in our hair can’t even get discriminated against anymore causing us to lose or not get a job. I don’t know what his disdained he has for woc, but he openly has it out for them, which usually is a sign of self issues within a person’s self and that’s a whole another conversation. And yes I do think Chris owes Jada apology for mocking and making fun of her medical condition, which I find it hard to believe he didn’t know, and I think it would also be a step in the right direction for him, because trust me he’s seen as problematic.

      Also I think when the time is appropriate it wouldn’t hurt for him and will to have a conversation it doesn’t have to be on red table top but I do think those two need to sit down when a period of time has passed and and have some reflection between the two to hopefully resolve things and move forward.

      And I’m going to say this the energy that people have for saying will should be sanctioned and held responsible, they need to have the same energy towards the types like Johnny depp, the Harvey weinsteins, Roman polanski’s, woody Allen, etc. People have accepted the abusive, disgusting and bad behavior of those and many more above, versus a husband losing his temper defending his wife being mocked on International live television about her medical condition……..

  33. Sajka says:

    His behaviour is not excusable. If he had slapped him backstage, the media interest would not have been so great. He is not known for being aggressive and beating people up. This was his first outburst and we have to admit that he is human and that he makes mistakes. There are enough other celebrities who have done much worse and more criminal things and they have been forgiven. It’s a good thing that all the people who are calling for his career to end etc. have never made mistakes in their lives. He will have to live with this mistake for the rest of his life and it will be held against him for years to come.

    • KT says:

      I would bet the majority of us have never made the “mistake” of assaulting someone at work. In most professions, yeah, that would be career-ending.

      • Sajka says:

        Of course, you don’t physically attack your colleagues, but they can be verbally bullied. We had our workplace behaviour and code training again this year after Corona. In the US, 30% of workers said they had been bullied directly. Just because someone doesn’t raise their hand, their behaviour can be toxic and cause more damage than a one-time slap.

  34. House of No says:

    Will shouldn’t have done what he did.


    Chris and Will talked about not targeting Jada before and he still did it. For some reason, Chris had some aggrievance with her and has been harassed by him for years. He’s a bully and he thought his words would be welcomed. Did he deserve a smack? Not necessarily, but I could see how someone (Will) could get so fed up. This doesn’t make his behavior right, but I understand.

    Chris isn’t an innocent cat. He belittles or disparages black women and the community as a whole often, especially in white spaces. So, I honestly believe something’s entirely wrong with that dude. Given that the joke was unscripted and he said what he said, his behavior feels even more egregious and malicious.

    I tire of abuse in “jokes” being normalized. No one should have to sit on a good night and just take someone’s abuse. If you think so, seek help. It’s such a wrong thing to put out in the air where kids pay attention. They should deal with the bully and we should give the bully further space.

    What an odd lesson to teach society.

    By the way, how’s Jada?

    I’m asking the folks much more concerned about themselves and others, but her.

  35. Truthiness says:

    I love Shakespeare and I loved Denzel coming out with MacBeth. For a few years I’ve thought that I really hope the Oscars haven’t finished giving him Oscars, he is still putting in performances that others can’t equal on their very best day. Everyone was lucky he was in the room.

  36. Sal says:

    I wonder if the Smiths were more upset by Regina Hall’s joke about their open marriage earlier in the night and so Will decided to take it out on Chris Rock.

    And she wasn’t invited to the Oscars in 2016. That joke was fair game, regardless of anything else.

    • Virginfangirl says:

      I would love to see a montage of Will’s reactions over the years when his colleagues are the butt of the jokes. Because of he has a habit of laughing then shame on him.

  37. AKA says:

    In case anyone has any doubts if Chris is beyond making fun of a black woman about her hair, I present you exhibit A:

    Not saying he deserves to be slapped, but I now doubt Chris’ own intentions.

  38. candy says:

    It’s never ok to hit someone. But I hope Chris Rock learned to stop commenting on women’s bodies.

  39. Mee says:

    Omg I have read every single comment and thank you so much to the BW who have been pointing out that Rock started this whole sh*t in the first damn place!!! I just kept thinking out of all the jokes to make, out of all the people to pick on in a room of what 300, Nicole Kidman sitting right there, so bony/skinny you could count her ribs….no jokes about Denzel’s or Samuel L Jackson’s wife, why did Rock pick on Jada? And about her hair??!!! Black women’s hair is not for your thoughts, comments, opinions, questions, jokes etc. A bill had to be enacted and passed to prevent discrimination against black women because of their hair! What other ethnicity has to do this??? Christ it’s exhausting enough being a BW, they’re tired of being asked to smile and laugh when being publicly put down.

    And yes Rock is a problem, he named his post -divorce comedy tour ‘Alimony’ , eventually had to change it because people kept complaining.

  40. Midnight@theOasis says:

    Excellent article on white women centering themselves in this discussion:

    The Will Smith & Chris Rock Slap Situation Is Not About You

  41. Gracie says:

    Thoroughly impressed by the swift actions of Will’s peers that night. Those are good friends.

  42. Bread and Circuses says:

    It annoys me how the men are being treated like the main characters.

    Jada was publicly humiliated, at a work function, in front of all her professional colleagues and the whole world, for how a medical condition affects her appearance. SHE is the main character. How dare Chris. Yeah, the slap was wrong, but I have trouble caring.

    It also annoys me we can’t spend this time oohing and aahing over how fabulous she looked in that gorgeous emerald dress. She looked incredible, and she rocks the shaved head.

  43. Veronica S. says:

    I think it was obvious to anyone that some kind of bad blood existed previously. You don’t just snap all of a sudden on such a big night for no reason, not without a history behind it. Whether that enmity is with Rock specifically or other things going on behind the scenes that compounded, I have no idea, but it was shocking precisely because we didn’t expect it from him.

    In some ways, I almost wonder if it would be smarter for both sides to keep quiet about it for awhile. Let the natural course of things settle as 24 hour news cycles fill up our plates with other drama so we can move on.

  44. Ray says:

    First Rock should have used a joke about the category he was presenting. Second if he was going to joke, choose Will, not his wife or kids. There was no reason for Rock to bother with Jada. Third he should research the object of his joke. A quick search would have told him about Jada . He’s damn lucky others calmed Will down.

  45. Kahlia says:

    What no one talks about is how differently Rock treated Penelope Cruz vs Jada. He was so complimentary and nice to Bardem and Cruz in a sort of funny way. And then when it came to the Smith’s, he out of nowhere took a cheap shot at Jada’s appearance, like he just couldn’t help himself. Right away, Rolling Stone had an article about how Rock has been saying crap about Jada for years. Far before the People article. I think perhaps with the history and the contrast between how Javier’s wife was favorably treated vs Jada, and her reaction, that may have been what triggered Will’s snap. Yes, Will initially laughed, but we often laugh to cover how we are processing what was said.

    And for everyone saying, “Oh, Jada could have just defended herself and Will took away that opportunity for her!”, I would like to point out that when you are a woman who has to constantly defend yourself against men, you get tired. You become so bone deep exhausted from having to defend yourself all the time and take the higher road and be in control of your emotions. Never let them see you be weak. Never let them see that they bother you when they harass you. Tell the world that you are unbothered even though inside it kills you and breaks your heart. Expose your vulnerability before they can attack you for it. If you have to show a reaction, act annoyed and dismissive rather than hurt or any other emotion that might give them satisfaction. It takes so much energy to look strong all the time, and it’s refreshing when someone wants to protect you. I’m sure Jada didn’t want Will to protect her and defend her by actually slapping Rock, but… on some level, it must have been satisfying. And it’s nice to know your husband actually cares about things that hurt you emotionally.

    My husband is the worst at that. I was verbally abused at work and humiliated in a way that put me into a PTSD state for 2 days where I couldn’t get out of bed without crying, and he asked me to see it from my abuser’s perspective. I just about punched him. But god forbid a doe with a fawn come near me, my husband will freak the hell out and jump in front of me like it’s a rabid grizzly.