While doing press runs to promote his new film Emancipation, Will Smith stopped to chat with Trevor Noah on Monday (Nov. 28) night. As the actor spoke with “The Daily Show” host, they wound up on the topic of his infamous Oscars slap seen around the world.
As previously reported by REVOLT, on March 27, the King Richard actor left his seat in the audience to physically strike fellow actor and comedian Chris Rock on live television. Just before the slap, Rock made a joke about Smith’s wife’s lack of hair as he was on stage. The comment was enough to set “The Fresh Prince” off, and it was later reiterated that his wife suffers from the hair loss disease alopecia. “First of all, what has the journey been like since that day? Because everyone speculates… what has it been like for you?” Noah asked. Slumping low in his chair, Smith responded, “That was a horrific night. As you can imagine.”
“There’s many nuances and complexities to it, but at the end of it, I just lost it,” Smith explained. He continued, “You just never know what somebody’s going through. In the audience right now, you’re sitting next to strangers and somebody’s mother died last week, you know? Somebody’s child is sick. Somebody just lost their job. Somebody just found out their spouse cheated. It’s like there’s all these things, they’re strangers, and you just don’t know what’s going on with people and I was going through something that night,” Smith said on the late-night talk show.
He noted that his issues did not justify his actions but that he’s learned to be nice to others. “It’s hard. And I guess the thing that was most painful for me is, I took my hard and made it hard for other people,” he shared. Smith added, “I understand the idea when they say, ‘Hurt people, hurt people.’” As the discussion continued, the “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It” rapper mentioned his anger was a result of many things bottled up over the years including seeing his mother getting beaten by his father. Noah added, “I think that’s not who you are. I think everybody can make a mistake.”
As for Emancipation, the motion picture is about a slave named Peter who escapes from a plantation in Louisiana after being badly beaten. During the interview, Smith said, “I promised I wouldn’t make a slave movie. This is a freedom movie.” The film arrives in theaters nationwide on Dec. 9.
Check out the trailer below.