Tyler Perry Explains His Interaction with Will Smith After the Infamous Oscars Slap [Video]

Tyler Perry recalled Will Smith’s Oscars incident in a new interview. During wide-ranging conversation with Gayle King as part of the Tribeca Film Festival’s Directors Series in New York City on Monday, June 13, Tyler addressed the shocking moment which took place at the 2022 Academy Awards back in March.

via: Insider

Tyler Perry has explained that he was not comforting Will Smith after the latter slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, but was actually trying to calm the situation.

“There’s a difference between comforting and de-escalating,” Perry said during a Q&A session with Gayle King at the Tribeca Film Festival on Monday, per Variety.

At the Academy Awards in March, Smith shocked the audience when he went on stage and slapped Rock after the comedian made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. Footage taken at the event showed Perry appearing to comfort Smith afterward, during a commercial break.

“I was there, close up. I left early to go and check on Chris because it was wrong in no uncertain terms and I made sure I said that to Will,” he added on Monday, per Deadline.

Smith was “devastated” after the slap, Perry continued, per the outlet.

“He couldn’t believe he did it. And I’m looking at this man in his eyes, going, ‘What are you doing? This is your night,'” the actor said, per Deadline. “And to get all this way to winning an Oscar. It was one of the crowning moments of his career that he wanted so desperately.”

Shortly after the slap, Smith went on to win the Best Actor trophy for his performance in “King Richard.” However, he has since been banned from attending the Oscars for 10 years.

“I think he is very much in reflection, trying to figure out what happened,” Perry said, per Variety.

Citing Smith’s memoir “Will,” Perry alluded to a section in the book in which Smith recalled being unable to “protect his mother at 8 years old,” per Deadline.

“I know that feeling of being a man and thinking about the little boy. If that trauma is not dealt with right away as you get older, it will show up in the most inappropriate, most horrible time,” he said, per the outlet.

Perry also described Rock as a “pure champion” for how the latter handled the incident, per Deadline. However, he added that “something happened that was extremely painful for [Smith] as well.”

“It’s no excuse, he was completely wrong, but something triggered. That was so out of everything he is,” said Perry, referring to Smith, per Deadline.

“Being friends with both of them, it’s been very difficult,” Perry added, per Variety.

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