Rosie O’Donnell, Tiffany Haddish And Others Shared Their Reactions To Will Smith Slapping Chris Rock At The Oscars
We all witnessed the same disappointing, and frankly, wildly unprofessional behavior unfold live in front of our eyes during last night’s Academy Awards broadcast. I think we can all agree that what we saw, which was Will Smith bum-rushing the stage and slapping Chris Rock in the face after he made a G.I. Jane II joke about Will’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, who suffers from alopecia, was undeniably shocking. Yet, unsurprisingly, reactions to The Slap have been as all over the place as the broadcast itself. But personally, when the camera person in charge of audience reaction shots failed to capture the crucial 30 seconds between when Will was shown laughing at Chris’ joke, and the moment Will saw Jada’s face and decided he needed to slap the taste out of his mouth, I said to myself, “wow, this is a new low for Hollywood.” Say what you will about the demise of the Golden Globes, but at least their crew would have had coverage.
But now, thanks to that disappointing and unprofessional oversight, not only will Will never get the recognition he earned for Best Reaction GIF, we now have to wallow in the discourse. Rosie O’Donnell described The Slap as “a sad display of toxic masculinity from a narcissistic madman,” while others praised The Slap, like Tiffany Haddish, who called it “the most beautiful thing” she’d ever seen. According to Page Six, Rosie was especially perturbed and called out the Academy for not doing anything about it.
Rosie O’Donnell wants answers from the Academy.
After Will Smith stormed the 2022 Oscars stage to slap “the shit out of” Chris Rock for making a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s alopecia Sunday night, the Academy tweeted that it “does not condone violence of any form.”
“Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world,” the statement continued.
“they [sic] why did you do NOTHING ?” she tweeted in response.
O’Donnell, 60, followed up her tweet with a message of support for the stand-up comedian, 57, that she pinned to the top of her timeline.
“so upsetting – on every level – bravo to Chris Rock – for not eviscerating will smith – which he could do any day of the week – he walked away – bravo from a sad display of toxic masculinity from a narcissistic madman #Oscars2022 #chrisROCK,” she wrote.
Fellow comedian Kathy Griffin agreed with Rosie and warned that, after this incident, every teenage Philadelphia rapper turned TV star turned pseudo-Scientologist multi-millionaire Hollywood movie star, might start lurking around comedy clubs just waiting for someone to say some shit about their wife.
totally – insanity https://t.co/B9A81u5USc
— ROSIE (@Rosie) March 28, 2022
And in a since-deleted tweet, Judd Apatow made it real awkward for his daughters knowing full well that Maude and Iris Apatow are eventually going to have to face Jaden Smith at a party at Justin Bieber’s house and explain why their dad was being to extra. “Sorry, Jaden, he’s never seen an episode of Drag Race before!”
Judd Apatow deleted his tweet where he said Will Smith's slap 'could've killed' Chris Rock pic.twitter.com/4LPOfVhvjP
— Culture Crave 🍿 (@CultureCrave) March 28, 2022
For his part, Jaden tweeted “And That’s How We Do It,” and in a since-deleted tweet, he said “My Dads Speech Made Me Cry.” Maybe he deleted that one because he spelled “cringe” wrong. Many people’s reactions had more to do with The Slap’s aftermath, Will subsequently winning the award for Best Actor, receiving a standing ovation from the crowd, and, in his acceptance speech, claiming he wants to be a “vessel for love,” than with the missing reaction shot of Will deciding his vessel was about to runneth over all up and down Chris’ face. An egregious situation I still refuse to accept.
We should never get to a place where we sit and watch a movie star hit someone on global television then, moments later, get a standing ovation while talking about love. #WillSmith #Oscars
— Maria Shriver (@mariashriver) March 28, 2022
Will Smith owes Chris Rock a huge apology. There is no excuse for what he did. He’s lucky Chris is not filing assault charges. The excuses he made tonight were bullshit.
— Rob Reiner (@robreiner) March 28, 2022
Of course, not everyone who shared their reaction to The Slap thought that Will was in the wrong. For example, Tiffany praised Will for doing what a “husband is supposed to do,” which apparently involves more than just rubbing Jada’s feet in the limo on the ride home. People reports:
“When I saw a Black man stand up for his wife. That meant so much to me,” Haddish, 42, told PEOPLE at the Governors Ball following the ceremony.
Haddish, who starred in 2017’s Girls Trip with Jada, continued, “As a woman, who has been unprotected, for someone to say, ‘Keep my wife’s name out your mouth, leave my wife alone,’ that’s what your husband is supposed to do, right? Protect you.”
“And that meant the world to me. And maybe the world might not like how it went down, but for me, it was the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen because it made me believe that there are still men out there that love and care about their women, their wives.”
The comedian and actress went on to note that Rock is “a friend” of Will and Jada, and questioned, “Why would you do that? He didn’t even run the joke by her, but she was hurt though.”
“If she wouldn’t have been hurt, [Will] probably wouldn’t have said nothing,” said Haddish. “But you could see he was clearly… And they exploited it. They exploited her, so ‘I have to do something’… He protected his wife.”
Tiffany obviously hasn’t watched The Gilded Age. But I have. And from my understanding of what a husband as rich and powerful as Will Smith is supposed to do when his wife has been publicly insulted, is to use your connections to pummel the offending party into financial oblivion. And if physical violence simply cannot be avoided, a simple glove strike followed by an invitation to a duel to be held at sunrise following the Vanity Fair after-party is acceptable. The Slap was just plain tacky. And it hardly rises to the egregious miscarriage of duty perpetrated by the camera operator who missed The Quickening.