MANILA, Philippines — Hollywood actor Jim Carrey weighed in on the whole Will Smith-Chris Rock slap controversy during the Oscars 2022.
In a March 28 TV interview with Gayle King for “CBS Mornings,” the comedian made it clear that he was disappointed at how the live event audience gave Smith a standing ovation during his Best Actor win, despite having just slapped Chris onstage earlier that night over a joke about Will’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith.
“I was sickened by the standing ovation. I felt like Hollywood is just spineless en masse and it really felt like, oh, this is a really clear indication that we’re not the cool club anymore,” he said.
Carrey also said, being a comedian himself, that he would’ve announced that he would sue Will for 200M dollars the next day had he been in Chris’ shoes.
“I’d have announced this morning that I was suing Will for $200 million because that video is going to be there forever. It’s going to be ubiquitous. You know, that insult is gonna last a very long time,” he said.
He said it would’ve been more acceptable to “yell” from the audience about his “disapproval” of the joke, adding, “You do not have the right to walk up on stage and smack somebody in the face ’cause they said words.”
He also felt like the controversy stole the spotlight from the other winners that night who worked hard to reach that milestone in their careers, noting that Will’s outburst was a “selfish” action.
“It casts a pall over everybody’s shining moment last night, you know?” he pointed out.
“A lot of people worked really hard to get to that place and to have their moment in the sun and to get their award for the really hard work they did.”
When the interviewer commented that the incident “escalated to that level,” Carrey disagreed.
“It didn’t escalate. It came out of nowhere because Will has something going on inside him that’s frustrated. And I wish him the best, I really do. I don’t have anything against Will Smith. He’s done great things. But that was not a good moment.”
Before taking home the award for Best Actor, Will approached Rock on stage after Rock made a “G.I. Jane 2” joke in reference to Jada’s shaved head, which she had due to Alopecia, a condition that results in hair loss.
The “King Richard” star apologized to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, as well as his fellow nominees during his acceptance speech. He also apologized to Rock in an Instagram post.
“My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable,” Smith wrote in part. “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. I was out of line and I was wrong.”
The Academy released a statement, saying it condemns Will’s actions, saying the org “officially started a formal review around the incident.”