It was the slap heard all around the entertainment and combat sports world delivered by Will Smith to Chris Rock at the 94th Academy Awards.
Will Smith apparently took offence to a joke made about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith and proceeded to calmly walk up to him and slap him across the face. Smith then sat down and yelled from his seat: “Keep my wife’s name out of your f*cking mouth.”
Rock tried to explain after acknowledging to the crowd that “Will Smith just slapped the sh*t out of me,” that it was a GI Jane joke.
Rock previously joked about Pinkett Smith at the 2016 Oscars with Smith responding then with the same comment.
“That was the greatest night in the history of television,” Rock said moments later while presenting the best documentary award.
Smith later won his first Oscar, best actor, for playing Serena Venus Williams’ father in King Richard. He then said in sort of apology his acceptance speech. “Richard Williams was a fierce defender of his family. I’m being called on in my life to love people and to protect people and to be a river to my people.”
But the combat sports community, perhaps led by UFC president Dana White jumped online to share their thoughts on the shocking moment.
— danawhite (@danawhite) March 28, 2022
— Mike Pierce (@MikePierce170) March 28, 2022
— BLÜBEARD (@BLBEARD2) March 28, 2022
— José Miguel 🉐👨💻📈 (@FinTechSamurai) March 28, 2022
“At your highest moment, be careful. That’s when the devil comes for you.“
— Austin (@AustinPlanet) March 28, 2022
— oluwajwon (@kingsabalo) March 28, 2022
— V🌐 (@yoVincent888) March 28, 2022
— Shahzia arfi (@ShahziaArfi) March 28, 2022
— Vitorino James (@vitorino_james) March 28, 2022
So #willsmith is allowed to go onstage during a live #Oscars broadcast and physically assault #ChrisRock
and then STILL be able to go on afterwards to accept an award and people in the audience are clapping for him?
Hollywood elite definitely have their sh*t backwards pic.twitter.com/pGC0TRUJCS
— Pink Gucci (@jmadison60) March 28, 2022
Violence isn’t ok. Assault is never the answer. Also? This is the 2nd time that Chris has made fun of Jada on the #Oscars stage, & 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.
— Sophia Bush (@SophiaBush) March 28, 2022
Denzel Washington is a wise OG for telling Will Smith “at the highest moment becareful that’s when the devil comes for you” 💯 facts. Will and Chris should sort this out… #Oscars pic.twitter.com/CS67YxlhN8
— Aria (@ariaischic) March 28, 2022
If you're defending what Will Smith did to Chris Rock on a global stage, not only is he a violent, degenerate thug w/the intellect of a child, but you are one too. Especially after Will Smith actually laughed at the joke first. #Oscars pic.twitter.com/WzJoqPagk0
— Sarcastic Cupcake (@SarcasticCupcak) March 28, 2022
Chris Rock: Will Smith surely won't do anything at the Oscars with millions of viewers watching if I disrespect his wife. I should be fine.
— The Permanent Marker MMA🥃 (@MarkerMma) March 28, 2022
We see violence in #UkraineWar and do little and #WillSmith punches #ChrisRock at the #Oscars and people get mad? #UFC is very popular and legal but fr a slap is what we frown upon. We can watch violence…but get shocked when we…see it? pic.twitter.com/ylknbeJwbC
— Raider of the Lost Oak (@LL45532856) March 28, 2022
— Sovietgodd (@2e55df018a6f42b) March 28, 2022
— Rock Rage Radio (@RockRageLive) March 28, 2022
@willsmith Trying to be like @GamebredFighter now? As a husband I get it. You don’t talk shit about peoples family. And if you do then you get rocked. It is literally that simple folks. #WillSmith #Oscars #ufc https://t.co/fpj2FKO10p
— FALLENSAINTSTAN (@svanhornjr2) March 28, 2022
— The Arm Bar (@thearmbar365) March 28, 2022
— MikeyKnuckles 🇺🇲 (@GuapoWithAGun) March 28, 2022
— くろ (@msvdastinkyouji) March 28, 2022