Wanda Sykes Felt It Was ‘Gross’ Seeing Will Smith ‘Enjoy’ 2022 Oscars After Hitting Chris Rock
Wanda Sykes was sickened by what transpired Sunday at the 94th Academy Awards.
The actress and comedian — who hosted this year’s ceremony alongside Regina Hall and Amy Schumer — said on Wednesday’s episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show that she “physically felt ill” upon watching Will Smith, 53, strike Chris Rock onstage, and is “still a little traumatized by it.”
“And for them to let [Will] stay in that room and enjoy the rest of the show and accept his award, I was like, ‘How gross is this?’ This sends the wrong message,” said Sykes, 58.
Will struck Rock, 57, onstage at the Dolby Theatre on Sunday over a joke about Will’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith. Rock declined to press charges, and has not yet spoken out about the incident.
“If you assault somebody, you get escorted out the building and that’s it. But for them to let him continue, I thought it was gross,” Sykes told Ellen DeGeneres of the incident. Will went on to win the Oscar for Best Actor and took the stage to accept the award with an emotional speech.
Sykes also shared how the incident played out from her perspective as a host, telling DeGeneres, 64, that she “felt so awful for my friend Chris” when she found out about it while backstage.
“I saw Chris at [Guy Oseary’s afterparty] and as soon as I walked up to him, the first thing he said is, ‘I’m so sorry.’ I was like, ‘Why are you apologizing?’ ” said Sykes. “He was like, ‘It was supposed to be your night. You and Amy and Regina were doing such a great job. I’m so sorry this is now gonna be about this.’ ”
“Because that’s who Chris is,” she added.
Sykes also said she feels she and her co-hosts deserve an apology: “This is our house, we’re inviting you in, we’re hosts, we’re gonna take care of y’all tonight and make sure you have a good time. And no one has apologized to us. We worked really hard to put that show together, so just the industry itself, I’m like, ‘What the hell is this?’ ”
Will publicly apologized to Rock in a statement on Instagram Monday, admitting he “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.”
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive,” the Best Actor winner also said. “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.”
The incident occurred after Rock said, in part, while presenting the award for Best Documentary, “Jada, I love ya. G.I. Jane 2, can’t wait to see ya.” Jada recently opened up about her bald head, revealing it was a result of living with alopecia for years. The Girls Trip actress, 50, was visibly unamused by the joke, rolling her eyes from her seat.
Will added in his apology, “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.”
Rock has not addressed the incident, but he has comedy shows slated for Wednesday night in Boston. He declined to press charges, police revealed Sunday night. He was seen for the first time since being hit by Will in Boston on Tuesday.
Source & Credit: people.com