Oscars: Will Smith Smacks Chris Rock Onstage, Yells Profanities in Shocking Outburst

The "King Richard" actor punched presenter Chris Rock for mentioning wife Jada Pinkett Smith during the 94th Academy Awards.
presenter Chris Rock, left, reacts after being hit on stage by Will Smith while presenting the award for best documentary feature at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)
Chris Rock being punched by Will Smith at the Oscars
Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP

Leave it to the Oscars to stir up some trouble between Chris Rock and Will Smith.

During the 94th Academy Awards on March 27, presenter Chris Rock made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith being in “G.I. Jane 2” because of her short hair. Pinkett Smith has previously been vocal about having a hair-loss condition.

Her husband Will Smith’s response to Rock’s joke while presenting the Best Documentary Oscar to “Summer of Soul” proved to be unscripted. The telecast cut out the audio feed in the U.S. broadcast.

However, the Australian broadcast aired the whole, unedited sequence live. According to a leaked clip of the ceremony, Smith stormed onstage and smacked Rock in the face, with an audible thump.

“Will Smith just smacked the shit out of me,” Rock says while smiling.

Smith, meanwhile, yells from his seat, “Keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth.”

Rock responds, “Wow dude, it was a ‘G.I. Jane’ joke.”

Actors and journalists took to Twitter to post their disbelief at the altercation. Minnie Driver tweeted, “What. Was THAT?” Barry Jenkins similarly wrote, “WHAT???”

Watch the clip below.

Daily Headlines
Daily Headlines covering Film, TV and more.

By subscribing, I agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy.

PMC Logo
IndieWire is a part of Penske Media Corporation. © 2023 IndieWire Media, LLC. All Rights Reserved.