Oscars Scandals 2022: Chris Rock Gets Standing Ovation at First Show Since Oscars Slap: “I’m Still Kind of Processing What Happened”

Chris Rock Gets Standing Ovation at First Show Since Oscars Slap: “I’m Still Kind of Processing What Happened”

After getting slapped by Will Smith at the Academy Awards ceremony, Rock opened his comedy show in Boston on Wednesday with, “How was your weekend?”

 

Kicking off his comedy tour at the Wilbur in Boston, Rock walked out to two boisterous standing ovations that lasted roughly two minutes. As he attempted to get a word in, the comedian said, “You got me all misty and shit.”

Once the crowd had quieted down, he asked, “How was your weekend?” which was greeted with laughter. Rock went on to speak briefly about “what happened” but did not directly mention the Oscars ceremony, the Academy or Smith.

“I don’t have a bunch of shit about what happened, so if you came to hear that, I have a whole show I wrote before this weekend, and I’m still kind of processing what happened,” Rock said. “So at some point I’ll talk about that shit. And it’ll be serious, and it’ll be funny.”

(L-R) Will Smith accepts the Actor in a Leading Role award for ‘King Richard’ from John Travolta onstage during the 94th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theatre on March 27, 2022 in Hollywood, California.

 

He continued, “I’m going to tell some jokes. It’s nice to just be out.”

Later on in his set, he told the audience, “Except for some other pretty weird things, life is pretty good right now,” which led to big cheers. In general, the crowd appeared to be more responsive than Rock was used to or expecting, with the comedian at times referencing the loud reactions.

At the end of his show, which ran about an hour, he received another standing ovation.

This marked the start of Rock’s Ego Death World Tour, which runs through the fall. Ticket sales for his live comedy shows soared since Sunday’s ceremony; indeed, one attendee at the Wilbur told The Hollywood Reporter that she spent $2,200 on two tickets in the aftermath of this weekend’s controversy.

Rock’s appearance follows Smith taking to Instagram on Monday to apologize for slapping the comedian onstage during the live Academy Awards show.

“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable,” Smith wrote in the post.

The shocking moment at the Oscars ceremony Sunday came after Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, before presenting the award for best documentary feature. Rock suggested Pinkett Smith was getting ready to film a sequel to G.I. Jane — which was seemingly a reference to the actress’ shaved head. (Pinkett Smith has been open about her hair loss due to alopecia.)

Smith took the stage and slapped Rock. Returning to his seat, he yelled at Rock: “Keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth!”

Later in the show, while accepting the Oscar for best actor for his role in King Richard, in which he plays Richard Williams, father to tennis legends Venus and Serena, Smith aologized to the Academy and fellow nominees, but not to Rock. However, Monday’s post on Instagram did include an apology to the comedian.

“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,” he wrote. “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.”

On Wednesday, the Academy stated that “disciplinary proceedings” against Smith had begun, which could lead to “suspension, expulsion, or other sanctions permitted by the Bylaws and Standards of Conduct.” In this latest statement, the Academy also said Smith had been asked to leave the show but refused.