Updated 0512 GMT (1312 HKT) March 28, 2022
Sunday night’s Academy Awards show will not soon be forgotten.
It had historic and diverse winners, emotional acceptance speeches, and a shocking on-stage slap that will be talked about for years to come.
The big winner on the night was the movie “CODA,” which ended the show with a best picture Oscar. “CODA,” which stands for child of deaf adults, tells the story of a young girl who is the only hearing person in her deaf family. One of its stars, Troy Kotsur, won the Oscar for best supporting actor and became only the second deaf performer in history to win an Academy Award.
Other marquee awards went to Jessica Chastain, who won best actress for “The Eyes of Tammy Faye”; Will Smith, who won best actor for “King Richard”; and Jane Campion, who won best director for “The Power of the Dog.” Ariana DeBose’s best supporting actress win, for “West Side Story,” was the first in the category for a queer woman of color.
But many will remember this show for Smith hitting comedian Chris Rock in the face.
Before presenting the award for best documentary feature, Rock made a joke about the shaved head of Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith. She has been open about her struggle with alopecia, an autoimmune disorder that leads to hair loss.
After the joke, Smith walked toward Rock on stage and appeared to hit him in the face. According to CNN reporter Stephanie Elam, who was in the audience, she could hear Rock getting hit. Smith said twice during the incident, according to Elam, “Keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth!” The verbal part of the exchange was muted for television viewers at home.
In his tearful acceptance speech later in the show, Smith apologized to the Academy and said that Richard Williams, the famous tennis dad he portrayed in “King Richard,” was “a fierce defender of his family.”