“Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth.”
Viewers and attendees were left shocked when Academy Award winner Will Smith slapped host Chris Rock live on air during the Oscars on Sunday night (27 March).
The slap heard around the world came following a joke from Chris Rock about Jada Pinkett Smith’s appearance.
Smith has a shaved head following a diagnosis of alopecia, which she made public in 2018.
As he was presenting the award for Best Documentary, Rock began to tell jokes about famous couples attending the event.
“You know who’s got the hardest job tonight? Javier Bardem and his wife (Penélope Cruz) are both nominated,” Rock began.
“Now if she loses, he can’t win! He is praying that Will Smith wins, like please, Lord!
“Jada, I love you. GI Jane 2, can’t wait to see it,” he jibed.
The original GI Jane starred Demi Moore playing the role of a US Navy SEAL, where she sported a shaved head.
Will Smith was seen laughing following the joke, while Jada rolled her eyes.
Moments after the joke, Will rose from his seat and made his way towards Rock, slapping him before returning to his seat.
“Will Smith just smacked the s**t out of me,” Rock replied.
“Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth,” Smith shouted at the stage.
Following some tense moments in the Dolby Theatre, the show was back underway.
— Deadline Hollywood (@DEADLINE) March 28, 2022
Smith later apologised for the attack during his speech following his win for Best Actor.
“To the Academy, I want to apologise to all my fellow nominees,” Smith said, with tears in his eyes.
“Art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams.
“Love will make you do crazy things.
“Thank you for this moment, and thank you on behalf of Richard and Oracene and the Williams family.
“I hope the Academy invites me back,” he concluded.
Following the event, the Academy released a statement stating that they do “not condone violence of any form”.
The Academy 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 Academy (@TheAcademy) March 28, 2022
“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.”
LA Police Department later said that it was aware of the incident but that no charges had been filed.
The Los Angeles Police Department told @ABC News it is aware of the onstage altercation between Will Smith and Chris Rock, but no police report has been filed. https://t.co/F827hXsWGm pic.twitter.com/ITvGPCmDhr
— ABC News (@ABC) March 28, 2022
In a statement to ABC News, it said it is “aware of the onstage altercation between Will Smith and Chris Rock, but no police report has been filed”.