Whoopi Goldberg Predicts Academy Won’t Take Will Smiths Oscar Away After Chris Rock Slap
Whoopi Goldberg predicts the Academy will not strip Will Smith of his best actor Oscar following his altercation with Chris Rock at the 94th Academy Awards. Before he won the Academy Award, Smith walked onto the Oscar stage to slap Chris Rock after the comedian joked about Jada Pinkett Smith’s bald head while presenting the documentary feature category. Pinkett Smith announced last year she shaved her head after struggling with alopecia. Goldberg, an Oscar winner for “Ghost” and an Academy governor, reacted to the slap on the March 28 episode of “The View” and said Smith “overreacted.”
“I think it was a lot of stuff probably built up,” Goldberg said, pointing out that Will and Jada Pinkett Smith have been the butt of jokes for many years. Earlier during the 2022 Oscars telecast, Regina Hall made a joke about the Smith’s open marriage.
“I think he overreacted,” Goldberg continued. “I think he had one of those moments where it was like [goddamn it], just stop. I get it, not everybody acts the way we would like them to act under pressure. And he snapped.”
Amid calls for the Academy to take Smith’s Oscar away from him, Goldberg concluded, “We’re not going to take that Oscar from him. There will be consequences I’m sure, but I don’t think that’s what they’re going to do, particularly because Chris [Rock] said, ‘Listen, I’m not pressing any charges.’”
Goldberg’s “The View” co-host Joy Behar added, “I was thinking comedians are in danger everywhere. They want us to be edgy, to go out there and say what everyone’s thinking…and then they get mad. If you’re upset about something, walk off.”
The Los Angeles Police Department confirmed to Variety after the Oscars ceremony that Rock declined to file a police report related to the altercation. The full LAPD statement read: “LAPD investigative entities are aware of an incident between two individuals during the Academy Awards program. The incident involved one individual slapping another. The individual involved has declined to file a police report. If the involved party desires a police report at a later date, LAPD will be available to complete an investigative report.”
Smith apologized to the Academy and his fellow nominees during his “King Richard” best actor acceptance speech. Smith did not apologize to Rock, although Oscars presenter Diddy said that the two stars made up after the slap.
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