| Last updated
Resurfaced footage shows Will Smith teaching a child how to fake being hit during a Q&A.
He scooped the prestigious prize for his portrayal of Venus and Serena Williams' dad Richard in King Richard, and during a Q&A about the movie last November, he demonstrated his fake hitting technique for a child in the audience.
Obviously, nobody at the time could have predicted that this seemingly innocuous exchange would foreshadow one of the biggest showbiz news stories of modern times.
After being asked how he fakes being hit by a boy in the audience at the DGA Theatre Complex in Los Angeles, 53-year-old Smith invited him up on stage for a demonstration.
"I'm going to [clap my hands together] and you just turn your head when I go – and don't fall down the steps," he said.
So, if you had any doubts about Big Willy's ability to fake a slap, consider them dispelled.
Of course, publicity stunts and awards ceremonies go hand-in-hand, and initially many viewers assumed the incredibly public clash between Smith and Rock was some kind of sketch.
However, in the time that has elapsed since the dramatic moment, none of the involved parties have come forward about it being a set-up – and it is hard to see why Smith would have agreed to it, given the reputational damage it has caused in many viewers' eyes.
Indeed, Smith has issued a very sombre-sounding statement following the incident.
In a post on Instagram, he said: "Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behaviour at last night's Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable.
"Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada's medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally.
"I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.
"I would also like to apologize to the Academy, the producers of the show, all the attendees and everyone watching around the world. I would like to apologize to the Williams Family and my King Richard Family. I deeply regret that my behaviour has stained what has been an otherwise gorgeous journey for all of us.
"I am a work in progress."
In case you've been chilling in your cave the last couple of days, the incident occurred after Rock took to the stage to present the Best Documentary award.
Naturally, as a comedian, he took a few jabs at the audience – including Jada, and ended up on the wrong side of the Men in Black star.
It all went wrong when Rock made a 'G.I. Jane 2' joke, referencing Jada's shaved head.
He said: "Jada, I love you. G.I. Jane 2, can’t wait to see you."
At first, Smith appeared to laugh it off while Jada rolled her eyes, but he then walked onto the stage and smacked the comedian.
Rock seemed stunned, noting how Smith just 'smacked the s**t' out of him.
"Keep my wife's name out your f***ing mouth,” Smith shouted, to which Rock replied: "Wow... dude. It was a G.I. Jane joke."
If you have a story you want to tell, send it to UNILAD via [email protected]
Chosen for YouChosen for You
Most Read StoriesMost Read