Will Smith breaks down in tears during Oscars acceptance speech
Just hours after he slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars for making a joke about his wife’s alopecia condition, a clip has resurfaced online showing Will Smith mocking a bald man who 'waxes his head' back in the early 90s.
One of the most shocking moments in recent showbiz history saw the actor walk onstage before swinging his hand at Rock and sending the internet into meltdown.
“Will Smith just smacked the s*** out of me,” Rock said at the time. While some were unsure whether or not the actor was being serious, Smith made things very clear by then furiously shouting: “Keep my wife's name, out of your f***ing mouth."
He apologised at the beginning of his Best Actor speech and he then apologised again in a message addressed specifically to Rock and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
“I was out of line and I was wrong,” he said, adding that he understood that jokes were part of his life as a public figure, and that “violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive”.
If you\u2019re confused about what the hell just happened at the #Oscars between Will Smith and Chris Rock, here\u2019s the unedited versionpic.twitter.com/VGv0o8IvMk
— Hannah Jane Parkinson (@Hannah Jane Parkinson)
Rock made a joke about Pinkett Smith’s baldness, a result of alopecia. Smith added that: “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 emotionally.”
Since then, a clip has gone viral showing Smith making a joke at the expense of a bald man, with some social media users pointing out the similarity between that and the joke made by Rock on Sunday.
The footage in question comes from The Arsenio Hall Show in 1991, where Smith mocked John B. Williams, who was the bassist for the show's house band, The Posse.
\u201cHe gotta wax his head every morning.\u201d Now this is a video of Will Smith saying a joke about someone with Alopecia. \n\nOne reason I love the internet, it never forgets.pic.twitter.com/4OGlgSrcjA
The clip was reposted by Twitter user @Peter_OKH and it sees Smith say that 'everyone has rules to follow'.
"Like, he has a rule - the bass player? He's got a rule: He's gotta wax his head every day. That's a rule,” he said, sparking laughter from the audience.
While the Twitter user claimed the joke was about someone with alopecia, it’s not clear whether or not Williams suffered from the condition.
Will Smith slaps Chris Rock across the face after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith
While the ceremony will only be remembered for one thing, Smith did win Best Actor for King Richard 15 minutes after the bizarre incident took place on Sunday night and he referenced a piece of advice Denzel Washington had just given him.
“I’m being called on in my life to love people and to protect people and to be a river to my people,” Smith said. “I know, to do what we do, we’ve gotta be able to take abuse. You’ve gotta be able to have people talk crazy about you. In this business, you’ve gotta be able to have people disrespecting you. You’ve gotta smile and pretend that that’s okay.
“Denzel said to me a few minutes ago”, adding Washington said: “‘In your highest moments, be careful, that’s when the devil comes for you’.”
Have your say in our news democracy. Click the upvote icon at the top of the page to help raise this article through the indy100 rankings.