Chris Rock Saturday has spoken about last year’s Oscars night when he was slapped by Will Smith for making a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head.
Rock was presenting an Oscar in Hollywood last March when he made a crack about Pinkett Smith’s closely cropped head.
Smith who starred in many Hollywood movies including “Men in Black,” mounted the stage and slapped the comedian hard across the face, before returning to his seat and yelling obscenities at the presenter.
A few minutes later, Smith was presented with an Oscar for best actor for his role in “King Richard.”
Will Smith later apologized to Chris Rock but was banned from the Oscars for a decade.
Rock was praised for his measured response on the night, and has maintained near silence on the issue in the year since.
But on Saturday night’s live stream from Baltimore, he spoke about the incident. AFP cites Rock as saying:
People ask ‘Did it hurt?’. It still hurts.
Will Smith is significantly bigger than me. Will Smith played Muhammad Ali in a movie. You think I auditioned for that?
Will Smith practices selective outrage.
Everybody that really knows, knows I had nothing to do with that. I didn’t have any entanglements.
The comedian said Smith had been widely mocked after an episode of his wife’s podcast in which the couple talked about her affair and how it affected him.
Why would you do that? Many people have been cheated on, but the Hollywood power couple are the only ones who discussed it in public that way.
Everybody in the world called him a bitch. They called his wife a predator. Everybody called him a bitch.
Rock said the animosity from Pinkett Smith stemmed from a few years earlier when she had called on him to boycott the Oscars because her husband had been overlooked for his 2015 movie “Concussion.”
Rock, who at times appeared genuinely angry, said before last year, he had always loved Smith, first as a rapper, and then as an actor.
This year’s Oscars will be held on March 12.