It’s been four months since Will Smith’s Oscars slap was seen around the world. Today (July 29), the King Richard actor has finally opened up about that night’s events. In a nearly six-minute video posted to YouTube, Smith gets straight to the point and offers a public apology for his actions.
“Why didn’t you apologize to Chris in your acceptance speech?” Smith asks, seemingly reading questions posed by fans. “I was fogged out by that point. It’s all fuzzy,” he responds. The Philadelphia native continued, “I’ve reached out to Chris, and the message that came back is that he’s not ready to talk. And when he is, he will reach out. So I will say to you, Chris: I apologize to you. My behavior was unacceptable, and I’m here whenever you’re ready to talk.”
Smith extended his apology to Rock’s loved ones as well. “I want to apologize to Chris’ mother. I saw an interview that Chris’ mother did. And that was one of the things about that moment. I didn’t realize and wasn’t thinking about how many people got hurt in that moment,” Smith said. The I Am Legend actor took time to address the comedian’s brother, Tony, too. “We had a great relationship. Tony Rock was my man,” he explained before saying the situation was “probably irreparable.” Tony was extremely vocal about standing by his brother’s side following the March 27 physical assault. “If you think you gonna walk up on this stage, this ain’t the motherfucking Oscars,” Tony said during a show in early April while referencing the incident. “And if you walk your ass up here, you ain’t nominated for shit but these motherfucking hands. You gonna hit my motherfucking brother?” Rock’s sibling asked the crowd.
In Smith’s newly released video, he looks into the camera and tells viewers he’s been “replaying” what happened “in that moment.” He insisted that he understands his actions were wrong. Elsewhere during his apology, Smith was asked if his wife Jada asked him to confront Rock about his joke at the awards ceremony. He replied, “I made a choice on my own.” The Bad Boys actor also apologized to his family and the other nominees, specifically Quest Love.
Check out Smith’s full apology below.