Chris Rock Refuses To Play The Victim After Will Smith's Infamous Oscar Slap
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Chris Rock Refuses To Play The Victim After Will Smith’s Infamous Oscar Slap

Chris Rock backstage during this year's Academy Awards ceremony (Photo by Al Seib /A.M.P.A.S. via Getty Images)

On Sunday, Chris Rock spoke about Will Smith’s Oscar slap during his comedy set at PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, New Jersey, according to NBC News.

Rock, who just finished a mini-tour with comedian Kevin Hart, told the audience he does not identify as a victim. He jokingly admitted that the slap he received from Smith was not pleasant.

“Anyone who says words hurt has never been punched in the face,” Rock said and continued, “I’m not a victim. Yeah, that s— hurt, motherf—. But I shook that s— off and went to work the next day. I don’t go to the hospital for a paper cut.”

During the March 27 ceremony, Rock joked about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. Smith, 53, then marched on stage and smacked Rock in the middle of the live broadcast. Facing immense backlash from fans and his colleagues alike, Smith resigned from the Academy and was banned from attending future shows for 10 years, People reported.

Smith issued a statement addressing his public fall from grace, “I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”

Smith’s statement also apologized to the other winners and nominees. “The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home. I betrayed the trust of the Academy. I deprived other nominees and winners of their opportunity to celebrate and be celebrated for their extraordinary work. I am heartbroken.”

Smith added that “change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason.”

After the incident, Rock jumped into a solo comedy tour, but skirted the details of the slap. “I don’t have a bunch of s— about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I have a whole show I wrote before this weekend,” he told a Boston audience. 

“I’m still kind of processing what happened. So at some point, I’ll talk about that sh–. And it will be serious and funny.”

Meanwhile, the 57-year-old Rock and Hart, 43, recently completed their five-date co-headlining comedy tour, titled Rock Hart: Only Headliners Allowed.

At the end of Saturday’s show at New York City’s Madison Square Garden, Dave Chappelle joined the pair on stage when Hart presented Rock with an actual goat, representing the acronym G.O.A.T, the greatest of all time, People reported.

 Chappelle, 48, asked Rock, “What are you gonna name this goat, Chris?”

“The name is Will Smith,” Hart quipped to the audience’s roaring laughter. 

Hart told Jimmy Fallon, host of The Tonight Show, “[Chris is] my G.O.A.T. — he’s my guy. “And I wanted him to feel that and experience the world of understanding how I feel about him in front of that audience.”


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