Chris Rock Has Said He Is “Still Processing” His Altercation With Will Smith At The Oscars

The comedian referenced the incident during a stand-up show on Wednesday and promised that when he did comment officially it would be “serious and funny”.

Smith took to the stage on Sunday and slapped the comedian across the face following a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith and her hair loss.

Addressing the audience at the top of his show in Boston, Rock said: “How was your weekend?

A formal review into the altercation at the 94th annual awards ceremony has been launched

“I don’t have a bunch of **** about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I have a whole show I wrote before this weekend.

“I’m still kind of processing what happened.

“So, at some point, I’ll talk about that ****. And it will be serious and funny.”

It comes as Oscars organiser the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences revealed that Smith was asked to leave the 94th annual awards show after the incident but refused.

The organisation said the Best Actor winner’s actions were “shocking” and “traumatic” to witness live on television as it apologised to Rock, praising his “resilience in that moment”.

Smith later returned to the stage to accept the award for Best Actor for his performance in King Richard. He gave an emotional speech about the importance of protecting family.

Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith on the red carpet before the Oscars on Sunday evening

“Things unfolded in a way we could not have anticipated,” the Academy said in a statement.

“While we would like to clarify that Mr Smith was asked to leave the ceremony and refused, we also recognise we could have handled the situation differently.”

“Mr Smith’s actions at the 94th Oscars were a deeply shocking, traumatic event to witness in-person and on television,” the Academy said.

“Mr Rock, we apologise to you for what you experienced on our stage and thank you for your resilience in that moment.

“We also apologise to our nominees, guests and viewers for what transpired during what should have been a celebratory event.”

A formal review into the incident has been launched to discuss what disciplinary measures will be taken. Smith will reportedly be given the chance to provide a written defence.

The Academy said disciplinary action for Smith could include suspension, expulsion or other sanctions.

Will Smith apologised to the Academy and his fellow nominees during his acceptance speech following his win, and later to Chris Rock on social media

The actor apologised to the Academy and his fellow nominees during his acceptance speech following his win, and later to Rock on social media.

In a statement posted to Instagram, he admitted he had reacted “emotionally” to the joke, but that “violence in all its forms is poisonous and destructive”.

Pinkett Smith also called for a “season of healing” following the incident.

Smith’s behaviour has been heavily criticised by his Hollywood contemporaries, including Oscars co-host Wanda Sykes.

Speaking on the Ellen DeGeneres Show, the actress and comedian said she was “still traumatised” and felt disappointed by the way the show had handled the “sickening” incident.

She also praised Rock’s response after the altercation, revealing he had approached her to apologise about the incident because he knew it would overshadow her presenting efforts alongside Amy Schumer and Regina Hall.

“I just felt so awful for my friend Chris. It was sickening, absolutely sickening. I physically felt ill and I’m still a little traumatised by it,” she said.

Oscars co-host Wanda Sykes praised Chris Rock’s response after the altercation

“And for them to let him stay in that room and enjoy the rest of the show and accept his award, I was like, ‘How gross is this? This is just the wrong message’.”

“You assault somebody, you get escorted out the building and that’s it. But for them to let him continue, I thought was gross.”

Her co-host, Amy Schumer, said she was “still in shock and stunned and sad” over the incident.

Oscars showrunner Will Packer described the altercation as “a very painful moment for me”.

But others went further, with comedian Jim Carrey calling the Oscars audience “spineless” for applauding Smith’s win following his behaviour.

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