Chris Rock won’t press charges over Will Smith slapping him at Oscars
Troy Kotsur and Ariana DeBose nabbed historic Oscar victories, but the 94th Academy Awards might be remembered for Will Smith slapping Chris Rock.
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Fans of comedian Chris Rock who hoped he’d share his thoughts about being slapped by Will Smith at the Oscars during his show at Fantasy Springs on Friday night were disappointed as soon as he took the stage.
“I’m OK, I have a whole show and I’m not talking about that until I get paid. Life is good. I got my hearing back,” Rock said.
But he did skewer some celebrities and politicians during his set, including Hillary Clinton and her failure to win the presidency in 2008 and 2016, the Kardashians and how they “love Black people so much they take anyone in,” and Meghan Markle’s accusations of racism in the British royal family.
He also made light of corporations attempting to embrace diversity, raising his daughters, being single again, and people feeling afraid of offending anyone for any reason.
Rock, dressed in white jeans and a dress shirt, received a standing ovation after ending his joke on divorce and referring his friends to his ex-wife’s attorney.
No cell phones were allowed into the building and attendees were supplied with a locking pouch for all mobile devices.
Rock’s show comes days after things took a turn at the Oscars when partway through the evening, Smith slapped Rock after the comedian made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, who has alopecia, and her bald head. Both Smith and his wife have spoken out since the incident, but Rock has remained mostly silent.
On Friday, the Academy’s Board of Governors blocked Smith from its events for 10 years.
The incident happened right before Rock was scheduled to kick off his “Ego Death” tour with six shows at The Wilbur in Boston. Tickets immediately began to sell out for scheduled performances, including Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.
Tickets for shows following the Wilbur dates were initially going for $51 to $71, but resellers started listing them for exponentially higher rates. TickPick, a secondary ticket seller, saw a 641% increase.
During his April 30 show at The Wilbur, Rock only briefly addressed the slap during his show, saying he was “still kind of processing what happened.”
“Other than the weird thing, life is pretty good,” Rock said midway through his first of two sets.
Previous reporting by USA TODAY staff was used for this report.
Brian Blueskye covers arts and entertainment for the Desert Sun. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter at @bblueskye.
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