Wanda Sykes calls out the Oscars, reveals Chris Rock apologized to her and gives us a play-by-play of what happened when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards.
On Wednesday, Sykes, 58, was a guest on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, where she shared their insight on the incident.
Sykes, along with Regina Hall and Amy Schumer co-hosted the Oscars last Sunday night. The actress and comedian told DeGeneres that when she found out what had happened, she was backstage and she “felt so awful for my friend Chris.”
She reflected on the moment it happened. “I think we had finished the bit and I guess I was about to change to get into PJs. Regina and I, we had just introduced Chris from our bit, so I ran to my trailer because I wanted to watch him.”
“I was getting changed and watching him. Then the moment I went from my trailer — because I wanted to be in the house to watch — from that moment to when I got to the monitor backstage, I just saw Will leaving the stage and everything was quiet. I was like, ‘What happened? What happened?’ And everybody was like, ‘Oh my god.’ And then Will just starts cursing from his seat. And I was just like, ‘Is this really happening?’”
Sykes was asked about her thoughts on the incident and she said, “It was sickening. I physically felt ill, and I’m still a little traumatized by it. And for them to let [Will] stay in that room and enjoy the rest of the show and accept his award, I was like, ‘How gross is this?’ This sends the wrong message. If you assault somebody, you get escorted out the building and that’s it. But for them to let him continue, I thought it was gross.”
She then went on to tell DeGeneres about her run-in with Chris Rock at Guy Oseary’s after party.
“I hope he doesn’t mind me saying this, but I saw Chris and as soon as I walked up to him, the first thing he said is, ‘I’m so sorry.’ I was like, ‘Why are you apologizing?’ He was like, ‘It was supposed to be your night. You and Amy and Regina were doing such a great job. I’m so sorry this is now gonna be about this.'”
Wanda Sykes doesn’t think Chris should be apologizing but she does think someone else should.
“We were the hosts, right? So we were, this is our house, we’re inviting you in, we’re hosts, we’re gonna take care of y’all tonight and make sure you have a good time. And no one has apologized to us. We worked really hard to put that show together, so just the industry itself, I’m like, ‘What the hell is this?'”
Although Will Smith struck Chris Rock onstage after a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith, Rock declined to press charges.