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94th annual academy awards backstage
Photo Credit: Al Seib /A.M.P.A.S. via Getty Images

Chris Rock Says He's "Not A Victim" After Will Smith Oscars Slap

While on a recent comedy tour stop in New Jersey, Chris Rock gave his most direct response to being slapped by Will Smith thus far.

Slowly but surely, Chris Rock is revealing how he feels about being slapped by Will Smith. While performing at PNC Bank Arts Center on Sunday (July 24) during the Rock/Hart Only Headliners Allowed Tour with Kevin Hart, Rock joked about the Oscars 2022 incident.

“Anyone who says words hurt has never been punched in the face,” Rock said, later adding, “I’m not a victim. Yeah, that shit hurt, muthafucka. But I shook that shit off and went to work the next day. I don’t go to the hospital for a paper cut.”

Following the Oscars in March – where Will Smith took the stage to slap Rock for joking about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith – the comedian embarked on a mini solo tour, where he didn't talk about the incident at length. At the time of the incident, Rock was presenting the Academy Award for Best Documentary Feature Film, which went to Summer of Soul (...Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised).

"I’m still kind of processing what happened," Rock said at a March show in Boston, according to Variety. "So at some point, I’ll talk about that shit. And it will be serious and funny.”

After winning the Academy Award for Best Actor during the ceremony, Will Smith was subsequently banned from The Academy for 10 years, although Smith resigned prior to the announcement.

Rock has gradually gotten comfortable with joking about the incident, recently trading laughs about it with Kevin Hart and Dave Chappelle, the latter who was a surprise opener for the Only Headliners Allowed tour stop at Madison Square Garden last Saturday (July 23).