Oscars 2022: Will Smith vs. Chris Rock

New celebrity drama has unfolded as a result of an altercation during the Oscars academy awards ceremony. It is known that Best Actor award winner, Will Smith, hit Chris Rock during his monologue at the ceremony after making a joke about Will Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. Jada suffers with alopecia, a condition that causes major hair loss. Though there was an attempt at disciplinary action by removal from the ceremony, Smith refused to comply and still attended the after-party. While many of the attendees stayed neutral in the aftermath of the incident, the academy themselves issued an apology to Rock and denounced Smith’s actions, calling them a “deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television” (Kenneth Garger, New York Post).

Credit: New York Post, Vanity Fair

“While we would like to clarify that Mr. Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognize we could have handled the situation differently”. “Mr. Smith’s actions at the 94th Oscars were a deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television”. “Mr. Rock, to you for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience in that moment. We also apologize to our nominees, guests and viewers for what transpired during what should have been a celebratory event” (Kenneth Garger, New York Post).

As of March 28th, celebrities have since spoken out about the incident. Actress and director Sophia Bush has released a tweet saying, ” Violence isn’t ok. Assault is never the answer”. “This is the second time that Chris has made fun of Jada on the Oscars stage, and tonight he went after her alopecia”. “Punching down at someone’s auto-immune disease is wrong. Doing so on purpose is cruel. They both need a breather”. (Chantal Da Silva, NBC News). While the majority is mixed opinions with some defending Will Smith and others defending Chris Rock, Mia Farrow has taken Rock’s side. She states, “Jokes are what Chris Rock does. Always has been edgy. This was a mild joke for him. And I love GI Jane”. (Chantal Da Silva, NBC News). NBA player Stephen Curry has taken a neutral approach, saying, “But in all the unnecessary drama, at least we got the line of the night from Denzel Washington, At your highest moment, be careful. That’s when the devil comes for you.” (Chantal Da Silva, NBC News).

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