What Marlon Wayans, Jeff Ross And Others Have Said After Chris Rock Finally Talked About The Will Smith Oscars Slap

This weekend is the Academy Awards, marking the one-year anniversary of last year’s explosive ceremony. The Oscars are usually good for one or few viral moments, but the internet exploded when Will Smith walked on stage and slapped Chris Rock on national television… shortly before accepting the Best Actor award. After largely keeping quiet over these months, Rock finally addressed The Slap in his new Netflix stand-up special Selective Outrage, taking aim at the Smith family a number of times throughout its runtime. And now Marlon Wayans, Jeff Ross, and others have responded after the comedian finally talked about his infamous conflict with Smith.

Ever since The Slap occurred, there has been non-stop discourse over who was in the wrong, with the Film Academy also being held accountable for their actions on that night. Chris Rock had largely stayed silent, before finally letting it rip about his feelings on Selective Outrage, which made history as a live streaming event for Netflix. A number of comedians tuned in including Marlon Wayans, who opened up to CBS News about what it was like seeing Rock finally open up about his experience at the Oscars. He said:

It was good to hear him speak about it. You could tell it was passionate. What you heard was somebody that was hurt, somebody that was finding their way to heal in that moment.

Points were made. Marlon Wayans is friends with both Will Smith and Chris Rock, so his opinion on the matter might have more weight than the average person. He was happy to see Rock finally sharing his experience through comedy, hoping that there will be some healing as a result. Of course, the jokes at Smith and family might negatively affect their road to forgiveness, depending on how much he’s seen on the special.

Of course, Marlon Wayans wasn’t the only noted comic to speak up after watching Chris Rock’s Oscars-focused set on Selective Outrage. Indeed, the title itself was in reference to Will Smith. Roast legend Jeff Ross spoke to TMZ recently, and shared his perspective on that new stand-up special. He said:

I thought it was amazing. I mean, here’s a guy that stood up for himself using his words instead of his fists. It was amazing. He’s the smartest guy I know.

Much of the conversation surrounding the Oscars Slap was Will Smith’s use of violence in the prestigious awards ceremony. While some folks can understand why Smith would defend his wife, the physical nature of the confrontation was what many took umbrage with. 

Another comic who recently voiced his opinion on the matter is Donnel Rawlings, who also spoke to TMZ after watching Chris Rock’s stand-up special. He seems to think that Rock finally sharing his perspective could help the two celebrities finally reach an understanding, saying:

If there’s a time to talk it’s right now. The score’s even if you want to say it. Hopefully we can get it passed us, because these are two guys who for the most part stayed out of trouble. I saw Jill Scott right after the Will Smith incident and she said ‘Donnell, Will Smith 30 years unscathed.’ So people have a connection to both those guys, they’re not bad guys. Will they get to the point to hug it out and go to work and everything? They have pictures both of them being friends. Both of them celebrating each other.

Only time will tell if reconciliation is truly possible between the two. Will Smith has issued a number of public apologies about his actions that night, but the two reportedly haven’t actually spoken to each other since the Oscars. Although between Selective Outrage’s release and the upcoming Academy Awards this weekend, feelings might be reawakened for both of them.

Selective Outrage is streaming now on Netflix. Will Smith has some exciting projects coming down the line, including Bad Boys 4. In the meantime, check out the 2023 movie release dates to plan your next movie experience. 

Corey Chichizola
Movies Editor

Corey was born and raised in New Jersey. Graduated with degrees theater and literature from Ramapo College of New Jersey. After working in administrative theater for a year in New York, he started as the Weekend Editor at CinemaBlend. He's since been able to work himself up to reviews, phoners, and press junkets-- and is now able to appear on camera with some of his favorite actors... just not as he would have predicted as a kid. He's particularly proud of covering horror franchises like Scream and Halloween, as well as movie musicals like West Side Story. Favorite interviews include Steven Spielberg, Spike Lee, Jamie Lee Curtis, and more.