Over the past year, actor Will Smith has been more in the spotlight for his infamous Oscar slap than his performances as an actor. During the 94th Academy Awards in March 2022, Smith went up the stage and slapped Chris Rock, who was hosting the event, for making a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
The actor received a lot of criticism while many people still supported him, including boxing legend Floyd Mayweather. In October 2022, Smith explained in an interview that Mayweather called him every day for 10 days after the incident, making sure that he is doing fine.
Floyd Mayweather supported Will Smith
After actor Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage, Smith became a target, many media outlets, journalists, and even fans pointed out his unprofessional behavior. The actor’s mental health took a hit and he remained low-key for a while. In October, during a private screening of his movie, Emancipation, Smith praised Floyd Mayweather for being there for him during his bad times. He said,
“[Floyd and I] met each other, we’ve seen each other around, but we weren’t like, friends and, the day after the Oscars, for 10 days, he called me every day. And he was like, ‘Hey, you know you the champ, right? You good? You know you the champ, right? I want you to hear my voice say it.’ Every day he called me and it’s like, that’s my dude forever right there.”
Emancipation was Smith’s first movie after Oscar’s incident. It was released on 2nd December 2022 on Apple TV+. Publicly, Mayweather has never talked about the incident, but it’s clear that he supports Smith.
Will Smith slapped Chris Rock on stage
Comedian Chris Rock was hosting the 94th Academy Awards on March 27, 2022, and while hosting the event, Rock made a joke about Will Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head, which was due to a medical condition known as alopecia areata.
The comedian compared her to G.I. Jane and Smith was not a fan of it, he then went up the stage, slapped Chris Rock, and told him, “Keep my wife’s name out your f**king mouth!” Everyone at the event was stunned at first as they realized Smith’s anger was genuine. Shortly after some time, Smith went up to the stage as he won the Best Actor award for his portrayal of Richard Williams in King Richard and received a standing ovation.
Will Smith issued an apology to Rock and the Academy through social media the very next day. As a result, Smith was banned from attending the Academy Awards for 10 years.
Smith remained low-key after the incident, and finally, in July 2022, Smith posted a YouTube video in which he apologized to Rock, Rock’s mother, Rock’s brother.