Chris Rock has finally broken his silence on the Will Smith Oscars assault — kind of. On Wednesday (March 30), the 57-year-old comedian landed in Boston but refused to talk to paparazzi waiting for him at the airport. As predicted, he did include some commentary on the incident during his set.
In a clip shared by Variety, Rock sauntered into the room wearing an all-white suit and the crowd erupted in applause as they gave him a standing ovation.
“Whoa, OK!” he said. “Yo, let me do the show!” Once the cheers died down, he got right down to doing what he does best — making people laugh.
“How was your weekend?” he asked as the audience laughed. “I don’t have a bunch of shit 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 shit. And it will be serious and funny.”
That’s when a show attendee yelled, “Fuck Will Smith!” Without missing a beat, he added, “I’m going to tell some jokes. It’s nice to just be out.”
Chris Rock’s four-day stint in Boston precedes his Ego Is Death Tour, which is expected to kick off in April. The first show took place at the 1,000-seat Wilbur Theatre, with one sold-out show at 7:30 p.m local time and another at 10 p.m.
Tickets sold out quickly on Ticketmaster and were being resold on StubHub and other ticket exchange and resell websites for at crazy rates. Original prices started at $49.50, but after the Oscars they were going for as much as $800 to $8,000 on secondary sites.
The slapping incident went down on Sunday (March 27) as Chris Rock was introducing the Best Documentary category at the 94th Annual Academy Awards. As part of his spiel, he made a joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett and her closely shaved haircut.
“Jada, I love you: ‘G.I. Jane 2,’ can’t wait to see it,” Rock said, a reference to 1997 Demi Moore film. Smith initially laughed at the jab but after noticing his wife’s face, he charged the stage and hit Rock across the face.
“Oh, wow,” Rock said as Smith walked off stage. “Wow. Will Smith just smacked the shit out of me.”
Once in his seat, Smith yelled, “Keep my wife’s name out your fucking mouth.” Rock replied, “Wow, dude. It was a ‘G.I. Jane’ joke,” to which Smith yelled again, “Keep my wife’s name out your fucking mouth!”
Rock declined to press charges and the Los Angeles Police Department issued a statement explaining they would only take action if Rock changed his mind. Meanwhile, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences have launched an investigation and could possibly strip Smith of his first Oscar.