Smith was nominated for best actor for his role in the drama film King Richard. When Rock took the stage and made a joke referencing G.I. Jane (a film starring Demi Moore) in regards to Smith’s wife Jada Pinket Smith the actor took to the stage and slapped the comedian. It was revealed later that Pinket-Smith was diagnosed with alopecia.
“You reacted to your wife giving you the side-eye, and you went and made her day because she was mulled over laughing when it happened,” Rose, who is a motivational speaker, told WIS’ Billie Jean Shaw.
Rose adds that she initially thought the slap was a skit, but when she heard Will Smith screaming the F word, she knew it was real.
“When he slapped Chris, he slapped all of us. He really slapped me,” Rose said. “No one even heard his speech. No one was able to just be in the moment because everyone was sitting there like, ‘What just happened?” After the incident, she reached out to her son to check on him and to commend him on his reaction.
She also commented on Smith’s apology and mentioned how he has yet to reach out to Chris Rock, although the actor took to social media to issue a public apology. “I feel really bad that he never apologized,” Rose said. “I mean his people wrote up a piece saying, ‘I apologize to Chris Rock,’ but you see something like that is personal, you reach out.”