Will Smith’s ‘Biggest Fear’ in Wake of Oscars Slap (Report)
The dust hasn’t quite settled in the wake of the infamous Oscar slap.
Last month, Will Smith and Chris Rock shared a heated exchange over a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s hair — and to the shock of viewers and audience members, it turned physical. Jada suffers from alopecia, reportedly unbeknownst to Chris at the time.
Will publicly apologized and resigned from the Academy, but he’s now facing more fall out. IGN reports two of his upcoming projects are on hold, and the Academy is holding a disciplinary meeting this week to determine Smith’s punishment. Possible penalties could include being banned from attending future ceremonies, having his Best Actor win taken away and more.
Now, a source tells Us Weekly, “He feels terrible and is trying not to panic, but seeing his roles put on ice has been a hugely bitter pill to swallow.”
The insider continued, “His biggest fear is that he’s in the process of being fully canceled, and there’s nothing he can really do about it except sit back, suck up his punishment like a man and try to atone however he can.”
Will that atonement include smoothing things over with Chris? A source close to Rock tells Hollywood Life, “He can’t imagine forgiving Will, being friends with him. It is just a very weird thing to fully envelope.”
“Chris Rock doesn’t want the Will Smith slap to define him and the rest of his career. It sucks that it is now part of his life forever,” the insider explained.
The comedian is currently on his Ego Death stand-up tour, but he’s not ready to address the altercation.
“He doesn’t know when he will talk about it, he knows he will have to at some point, but he literally is focusing on his tour and for the dust to fully settle,” the source said. “It is still raw, emotional, and confusing to deal with and wrap his head around.”
Chris’ brother Kenny Rock, however, shared his feelings with The L.A. Times.
He said, "It eats at me watching it over and over again because you've seen a loved one being attacked and there's nothing you can do about it. Every time I'm watching the videos, it's like a rendition that just keeps going over and over in my head."
"My brother was no threat to him and you just had no respect for him at that moment," he said. "You just belittled him in front of millions of people that watch the show."
Kenny added that he would support the Academy taking Will’s Best Actor win.
Chris was presenting Best Documentary at the Oscars when he poked fun at Jada, saying he was looking forward to “G.I. Jane 2.”
Pinkett Smith immediately did not look pleased, and Will walked straight onstage and smacked Chris with his open hand.
As Smith walked back to his seat, a clearly shaken Rock said, “Oh, wow — Will Smith just smacked the s—t out of me.”
Rock insisted, “It was a ‘G.I. Jane’ joke,” and Will twice yelled, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f—king mouth.”
Chris told him, “I’m going to.”
Will later issued an apology on Instagram, writing, “Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive… Jokes at my expense are 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. 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,” Will continued. “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.”