Chris Rock 'still processing' slap by Will Smith at Oscars

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WARNING: This article contains strong language

  • Chris Rock has spoken out for the first time since he was slapped in the face by Will Smith at the Oscars on Sunday.
  • "I'm still processing what happened, so at some point I'll talk about that," Rock told the crowd.
  • Smith has since apologised to Rock, however the Academy has now revealed that the Oscar winner was asked to leave the ceremony but refused.

Comedian Chris Rock, in his first public comments since he was slapped in the face by actor Will Smith at the Oscars on Sunday, said he is "still processing" the incident that made headlines around the world.

"How was YOUR weekend?" Rock asked on Wednesday night of a sold-out crowd at Boston's Wilbur Theatre. He made it clear from the onset he did not plan to address the Oscars incident at length.

"I'm still processing what happened, so at some point I'll talk about that shit," Rock told the crowd. "It'll be serious. It'll be funny, but right now I'm going to tell some jokes."

Rock, 57, received a standing ovation from the Boston crowd.

"Let me be all misty and shit," he said, with tears in his eyes. "I don't have a bunch of shit to say about that, so if you came here for that...' he said, and paused. "I had written a whole show before this weekend."

The show must go on

Perhaps Rock's biggest revelation was his plan to get a vasectomy next week. He joked that he made his decision after seeing 78-year-old actor Robert De Niro drop off his 11-year-old daughter at school.

"I've already seen Hannah Montana once and that was enough," Rock quipped.

At Sunday's Academy Awards, Rock was on stage to present the trophy for best documentary. He made a joke about Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, that referenced the 1997 film G.I. Jane in which actor Demi Moore shaved her head. It was unclear whether Rock was aware that Pinkett Smith has a condition that causes hair loss.

Will Smith strode onto the stage and slapped Rock before winning best actor less than an hour later. The actor apologised to Rock and the academy in a statement on Monday.

During his 80-minute set in Boston, Rock never mentioned Smith. Instead, he launched into a stream of profanity-laced barbs directed at Great Britain's royal family, Meghan Markle, former US President Donald Trump, US President Joe Biden, former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Subaru, Lululemon and even his oldest daughter Lola.

"He came out swinging, but not about Will Smith," said Ramsay Fretz, a 32-year-old Boston real estate agent who sat in the balcony. "It's nice to see someone equally attack everybody."

After the slap that reverberated around the world, TickPick, an online marketplace for events, said it sold more tickets overnight to Rock's Ego Death tour than it did in the past month combined.

Balcony seat tickets with a face value of $61 fetched nearly $1 000 after Smith slapped Rock in front of nearly 17 million television viewers tuned into the Oscars.

Some attendees in Boston were disappointed that Rock refrained from verbally retaliating against Smith.

"You know, it was the elephant in the room," said audience member Jay Dee. "Everyone was waiting for the 'aha' moment that didn't come."

'I'm still traumatised'

Oscars' co-host Wanda Sykes revealed Wednesday she felt sick after the attack.

"It was sickening. It was absolutely - I physically felt ill, and I'm still a little traumatised by it," she told talk show host Ellen DeGeneres in a video interview.

"And for them to let (Smith) 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."

She also told DeGeneres that she had spoken to Rock after the show.

"The first thing he said is, 'I'm so sorry.' I was like, 'Why are you apologising?' He was like, 'It was supposed to be your night.

"'You and Amy (Schumer) and Regina (Hall) were doing such a great job. I'm so sorry this is now gonna be about this,'" Sykes said Rock told her.

READ NEXT | Will Smith refused to leave Oscars after Chris Rock slap, says the Academy 

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