Generally I write mostly about the Holocaust and World War 2. However every now and then, when I see something utterly ridiculous , I just feel compelled to voice my opinion.
It will not have escaped anyone by now that there has been a bit of an issue at the Oscars. Will Smith slapped Chris Rock, after stand up comedian Chris had made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith, Will Smith’s current wife.
One might think that this came out of the blue, but it didn’t. In 2016 Chris Rock had made jokes about Jada Pinkett Smith at the Oscars. This was in relation to Jada and Will threatening to boycott the Oscars that year in support of #OscarsSoWhite. Which was started by April Reign. She created the Twitter hashtag #OscarsSoWhite on January 15, 2015 to call attention to inequality in Hollywood and the lack of representation of people of color in the 87th Academy Awards nominations.
To put it in context in 2016 Jada was in de TV Show Gotham. She has appeared in 2 movies in 2015 and 2016. “Magic Mike XXL” rated 5.6 out of 10 on IMDB and “Bad Moms” rated 6.2 IMDB. Prior to that she had appeared in Madagascar 3 and Madly Madagascar, she had also an uncredited part in Men in Black 3, which starred her husband Will Smith, as far as I am aware he did not slap anyone in that movie for not giving Jada a credit.
Basically Jada had appeared in 2 exceptionally bad movies, and was in a TV show. It was her choice of movies that didn’t get her an Oscar nominations.
Chris Rock had this to say at the 2016 Oscars about the #OscarSoWhite boycott.
“What happened this year? People went nuts. Spike [Lee] got mad. Jada went mad. Will went mad. Everyone went mad, Jada said she’s not coming. I was like, ‘Isn’t she on a TV show?’ Jada’s gonna boycott the Oscars? Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties. I wasn’t invited.”
Rock continued, “Her man Will was not nominated for ‘Concussion.’ I get it. You get mad. It’s not fair that Will was this good and didn’t get nominated. You’re right. It’s also not fair that Will was paid $20 million for ‘Wild Wild West.'”
It was funny, witty, entertaining and above everything else, true.
Fast forward to March 27,2022. Will Smith was nominated for best Actor, one of the most important Oscars. Not only was he nominated he actually won it for, “King Richard” a sports drama film , about the life of Richard Williams, the father and coach of famed tennis players Venus and Serena Williams.
The thing Jada and Will had campaigned for, equality for African American actors was finally achieved. However instead of celebrating this as a highlight, Will Smith decided to slap Chris Rock on stage, for telling a harmless GI Jane joke. A joke Will had even laughed about himself, it was only after his wife gave an angry stare he decided to attack Chris Rock.
Personally I believe that Will Smith should not have been given the Oscar, he only received it after the altercation with Chris Rock.
I always liked Will Smith, I believe he should have received the Oscar for “I am Legend”. However the last few years he has been too busy promoting himself and his family a bit too much. Movies starring his son “After Earth” and “Karate Kid” both produced by Will Smith, flopped at the box office and rightfully so because they were awful movies.
I hope the Academy will learn from this incident, and leave political motivation out of the nominations. Filmmakers should be judged on the merits of their talents and not the color of their skin or their sexual orientation.
The movie industry was manipulated by politics before during the McCarthy era. It took great actors like Kirk Douglas to break that manipulation.