Will Smith gets jiggy with it at Oscars party hours after slapping Chris Rock

28 March 2022, 12:10 | Updated: 28 March 2022, 13:36

  • Fresh Prince of Bel-Air slapped comedian Chris Rock at the Oscars
  • The comedian had made a joke referencing Will Smith's wife's Jada's struggle with alopecia
  • Fierce debate rages over whether Will Smith's actions were right, with even British MPs weighing in
  • Calls grow for Smith to be stripped of Oscar
  • Chris Rock says he won't press charges

By Asher McShane

Will Smith brushed off one of the worst scandals in the history of the Oscars, dancing the night away to his hit Gettin' Jiggy With It at the Vanity Fair after-party.

Listen to this article

Loading audio...

Will, 55, slapped Chris Rock, and then collected the Best Actor gong, but his win was tainted by the TV punch in front of an audience of millions.

According to the New York Post, the actor and comedian had planned to meet at the Vanity Fair party to reconcile their differences, but it was unclear whether this had taken place.

Will Smith dancing with his Oscar at the Vanity Fair after-party
Will Smith dancing with his Oscar at the Vanity Fair after-party. Picture: Getty

The actor was supported by his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith and their children at the party just hours after he smacked Chris Rock in the face for making a joke about his wife's hair. Jada has been struggling with alopecia, a condition that causes hair loss.

Will Smith, Lupita Nyong'o and Jada Pinkett Smith attend the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones
Will Smith, Lupita Nyong'o and Jada Pinkett Smith attend the 2022 Vanity Fair Oscar Party hosted by Radhika Jones. Picture: Getty

Meanwhile a row broke out over whether he was right to use violence to defend the honour of his wife after Chris Rock made a gag about her alopecia at the Oscars.

Will Smith tearfully apologised after giving the comedian a fierce open-handed slap on stage after Rock made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head by comparing it to the look of Demi Moore in the 1997 movie G.I. Jane.

His actions sparked a huge debate over whether it can ever be right to resort to violence to defend your partner's honour.

Tory MP Simon Hoare posted: "I’d just hope if someone thought it in good taste to make a joke at the expense of a medical condition of my wife then I’d get up and lamp him. The *joke* was tasteless."

But Education Secretary Nadhim Zahawi told LBC: "Violence is never the answer to any problem-solving, as Will Smith admitted himself in that tearful, heart-wrenching apology.

"I think we should also remember - and I'm the Education Secretary - that actually sometimes even a joke can be below the belt.

"When a joke is about somebody's wife and her illness - she has alopecia - it is wrong.

"I think Chris Rock was mistaken to do that to Mrs Smith."

A row has broken out after Will Smith slapped Chris Rock
A row has broken out after Will Smith slapped Chris Rock. Picture: Alamy

Labour leader Sir Keir Starmer said: "Of course there are circumstances and anybody who insults family members excites something quite emotional in all of us.

"But, on the other hand, to go up and hit someone in that way is wrong, I'm afraid. It was the wrong thing to do.

"It was at the Oscars, it's got all the cameras there, millions of people watching."

Sir Keir said he was "struck by the fact that it didn't appear to me to be completely spontaneous" with Smith appearing to walk up to the stage "quite calmly and then hit someone".

"I'm sorry, for me that's the wrong side of the line."

Actor Denzel Washington is said to have tried to calm down The Fresh Prince, telling him: "“At your highest moment, be careful. That’s when the devil comes for you."

One Direction's Liam Payne defended Will Smith saying: "I believe whatever he felt that he did, he had the right to do.

"I had to leave my chair I'll be honest with you, it cut me really deep."

the actor tearfully apologised on stage following an incident with comedian Chris Rock in which he appeared to hit him during the live awards ceremony.

Philadelphia-born Smith, 53, took offence to a gag made on stage about Jada Pinkett Smith's short haircut, resulting in him marching on stage to confront the comedian.

He appeared to hit Rock before returning to his seat and shouting from the audience to Rock on stage.

Chris Rock had made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith's shaved head. He said: "Jada, GI Jane 2, I can't wait to see it".

Ms Smith has been grappling with hair loss since revealing her alopecia diagnosis in 2018.

There are calls for him to lose his Oscar over the slap, which breaches The Academy's new code of conduct drawn up in wake of the #MeToo Movement.

Chris Rock also reportedly told the LAPD he does not want to press charges over the incident.

After the slap, Will Smith returned to his seat and began yelling repeatedly at Rock: "Keep my wife's name out of your f***ing mouth".

More Latest News

See more More Latest News

More strikes are taking place on Saturday

Weekend travel chaos as another day of strikes leaves just a fifth of train network running

Mr Gove has backed Mr Sunak

Michael Gove backs Rishi Sunak in Tory leadership race - as he says Truss campaign has taken 'holiday from reality'

Boulter bit the PD Xander on the head

Man bites police dog on the head after lashing out at officer during arrest

Sanna Marin said she has taken a drug test

Finnish PM takes drug test as new video of her partying emerges


Isis 'Beatle' from London jailed for life in US for role in hostage taking and beheading plot

Sir Alex was in court on Friday

'I never saw Giggs lose temper' Man Utd's legendary ex-manager Sir Alex Ferguson tells trial

Keeping Up Appearances actress Josephine Tewson has died

Keeping Up Appearances star Josephine Tewson dies aged 91

The Environment Agency has issued 'do not swim' orders for 22 beaches in England amid fears sewage discharged from rainwater overflows may have polluted the waters.

'Do not swim' at 22 beaches in England after sewage discharge, Environment Agency warns

Ryan Giggs told his PR executive girlfriend Kate Greville she was "the jam in my donut"

‘Jam in my donut’: Court hears more of Ryan Giggs’ poetry and text exchanges with his ex

A man has appeared at the Old Bailey (right) accused of stabbing a man in a restaurant on London's Poland Street

Chef, 60, ‘stabbed worker to death in Soho Korean restaurant after row about food prep’

Thomas Nutt, 46, killed Dawn Walker hours after their wedding, storing her body in a cupboard before putting it in a suitcase and dumping it in bushes behind their home in Shirley Grove, Lightcliffe, near Halifax, West Yorkshire.

Killer husband who murdered wife on wedding night and hid body in suitcase jailed for life

Brits are scrambling to update their Apple devices after a major security flaw was found

Millions told to update Apple tech 'right now' after major security issue leaves devices vulnerable to hackers


NHS warns surging energy bills could cause 'humanitarian crisis' this winter

There are warnings the cost of a pint could reach as high as £14 in London in years to come

Price of pint in London could reach £14 and takeaway coffee nearly a fiver in coming years, research suggests

Melvin Terry waited for 27 hours in A&E before being sent home

Hospital apologises after grandfather, 76, spent 27 hours waiting for A&E bed before being sent home

The girl was allegedly abducted from Warne Avenue, Droylsden

Man, 23, arrested on suspicion of abduction and sexual assault of girl, 6, in Droylsden