Will Smith is one of the most popular actors of today, having done a variety of movies in his career, including The Pursuit of Happyness and I Am Legend. Apart from being quite the versatile actor, Will Smith is also a husband and a father to three kids. Everyone by now must be aware of the controversy he got himself in at the 94th Academy Awards when he strutted to the stage and slapped comedian Chris Rock for cracking a joke on his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
Since then, Will Smith has received endless backlash for his unprofessional actions and has also been banned from attending future Oscar events for the next ten years. Recently, he opened up about what went through his mind at the moment and why he resorted to violence at a prestigious award ceremony.
Will Smith Opens Up About the Ordeal
During promotions for his upcoming movie, Emancipation, Will Smith spoke to Trevor Noah on The Daily Show. When Noah stated that it had been a while since people saw Smith, the latter joked and stated, “I’ve been away. What y’all been doing?” This little humor came before Smith revealed what the whole ordeal has been like for him.
He stated that the Oscars night, which was when he won his first-ever Oscar award, was quite horrific. While there are a lot of factors to consider, Smith revealed that he had lost it and stated that no one sitting in the audience can truly know what a person is going through.
“That was a horrific night, as you can imagine. There’s many nuances and complexities to it, but at the end of the day I just, I lost it. I guess what I would say, you just never know what somebody’s going through. In the audience right now, you’re sitting next to strangers and somebody’s mother died last week, somebody’s child is sick, somebody lost their job, somebody just found out their spouse cheated…I was going through something that night.”
The Men in Black actor stated that he doesn’t believe this justifies his actions and behavior. Adding to what he learned from the unfortunate incident, Smith stated that people have got to be nicer to other people. He confessed that what hurt he had, he used it to hurt other people, quoting “Hurt people, hurt people.”
Will Smith Blames His Childhood
Noah revealed a phone call he had with his friend about the incident where the friend stated that he believed Smith showed his real self to the people on Oscars night. However, the host said that he disagreed with his friend as Smith, in his book, had written about avoiding conflict while growing up. Noah stated that he thought Smith stood up for the wrong thing at the wrong time, to which the actor agreed.
Smith stated that there were a lot of things that contributed to him acting without thinking. It was rage bottled up and it was his childhood experience with domestic violence.
“It was the little boy that watched his father beat up his mother, you know? And all of that just bubbled up in that moment… I understand how shocking that was for people. I was gone. That was a rage that had been bottled up for a really long time.”
Smith then talked about what the situation at his home was like when he returned and his nephew asked him about his actions. He stated that his nine-year-old nephew, Dom, had stayed up late to see him. While sitting on his uncle’s lap, holding Smith’s award in his hand, he asked him why he hit Chris Rock. A teary-eyed Smith tried to lighten the interview by saying, “Why are you trying to Oprah me?”
Smith also added that his upcoming movie, Emancipation, is a masterpiece created by a lot of talented people coming together. He fears his actions at the Oscars might result in the hard work of all the brilliant people in the movie, going to waste. While he hopes their work receives the honor it deserves, only time will tell how the controversy will affect the Antoine Fuqua directed movie.
Emancipation will premiere in theatres on December 02, 2022, and will be available to stream on Apple TV+ from December 09, 2022.
Source: The Daily Show