Chris Rock said Wednesday night he’s still “processing” the whole situation with Will Smith, and that he’ll be addressing the incident “at some point” in the future — but not today.
The comments came at the beginning of a sold out stand-up show Wednesday night at the Wilbur Theatre in Boston, Rock’s first public appearance since the slap.
“I don’t have a bunch of s— 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 s–. And it will be serious and funny,” Rock said during the first of two back-to-back shows on Wednesday.
During his second set, Rock covered similar ground, telling the audience “I’m still processing it,” and adding that “I haven’t talked to anyone, despite what you heard,” which presumably was a reference to reports, since denied, that Diddy said they worked it out.
Rock did joke that “my daughter didn’t get into her school. That’s the worst thing that happened to me that week,” but aside from that didn’t refer back to the Oscars debacle.
During the 2022 Oscars on Sunday, Smith slapped him after Rock told a joke about Smith’s wife, Jade Pinkett Smith. The incident sharply divided viewers and attendees before opinion coalesced around the conclusion that Smith was incredibly out of line. Since then, Smith’s actions have been condemned by the Academy, 2022 Oscars co-host Wanda Sykes, BAFTA, and even Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, among others.
Smith for his part avoided a direct apology to Rock while accepting his Academy Award for Best Actor on Sunday, but on Monday formally apologized in a statement published to his Instagram account.
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable. Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally. I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris,” Smith wrote.
“I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness. I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behavior has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us. I am a work in progress.”
We’ll have to wait somewhat longer to find out if Rock accepted this apology.
Nick Fratamico contributed to this report.