Will Smith's slap – and Hollywood's hypocrisy – may end the Oscars. He should have been arrested not given a gong

IT was billed as the Oscars show to end all Oscars shows.

Thanks to Will Smith, and Hollywood’s hypocrisy, it may just be the show to end the Oscars.


Until the Fresh Prince of Bel Air slapped and violently swore at Chris Rock over an ill-advised gag about his wife’s alopecia, Sunday’s show was lamentably lame, pathetically predictable. 

Obviously, Will aside, a room full of luvvies was only ever going to go one way: woke.

Which makes the reaction to his assault even more ludicrous.

Within 20 minutes of single-handedly shattering the glittering Hollywood facade – a genuinely shocking moment in an otherwise soulless, sanitised event – he was back on stage, winning Best Actor. 

Had any other member of the audience gone up and slapped a host, they’d have been unceremoniously chucked out. That is, after being slapped in handcuffs and driven down to the Los Angeles County Sheriff.

Instead, Will received a standing ovation.

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As three tears gently lolloped down his handsome face, the King Richard actor gave the performance of his life. 

In an emotional, self-pitying speech, he insisted “love makes you do crazy things”. Last time I checked, it didn’t make you thump Chris Rock.

Of course, there’s a slim chance this was all staged – in which case, Will really does deserve his gong. 

But judging by the comedian’s genuine look of horror, and his faltering, stuttering, subsequent monologue, the incident looked real.

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Real or otherwise, it perfectly sums up this town’s hypocrisy.

The exchange was muted on a delayed telecast Stateside, but was aired in full to other international audiences – meaning organisers’ bid to shelter US audiences was made utterly redundant as the clip went viral within nanoseconds.

Will’s actions – screaming “keep my wife’s name out of your f***ing mouth’ – soured an already tainted ceremony.

Beyoncé, dressed like Keith Harris’s Orville, kicked off proceedings.

The three female hosts (they couldn’t possibly have employed three white cis-gender males, obvs) Amy Schumer, Wanda Sykes and Regina Hall, quickly launched into woke joke after woke joke. 

Some landed, many missed.

Hollywood's biggest night has increasingly become a never-ending self-congratulatory snooze fest

Within the first eight minutes, there were “gags” about race, feminism, climate change and Covid.

Actress Regina groped four male stars on stage, telling Bradley Cooper, Tyler Perry, Timothy Chalamet and Simu Liu that she’d be swabbing them backstage later “with her tongue”. 

Had Denzel Washington patted down four attractive young women, he’d have been cancelled before he’d so much as stepped a foot off stage. 

Instead, how the audience at the Dolby theatre roared.

'TONE DEAF ORGANISATION'

Hollywood’s biggest night has increasingly become a never-ending (although, mercifully, they lopped off eight awards this year) self-congratulatory, snooze fest.

An event run by an industry attempting to lecture the world about politics and current affairs. 

This year, then, Hollywood stood with Ukraine. 

Well, stood with it for 23 seconds – the time it took to change the set during the supportive black-out. 

Still, those poor Ukranians should be grateful.

Award winners took home goodie bags worth £110,000. I doubt many refugees will be benefiting from their contents.

Elsewhere, heart-warming movie CODA – about a hearing girl who works with her deaf parents in a fishing village – won Best Picture.

It should have been an historic win for the deaf community.  Instead, all anyone will be talking about is Will Smith’s bitch-slap.

Fitting, I suppose, for an entirely tone deaf organisation. 

No wonder ratings have plummeted in the last few years.

One of the major problems is that hardly anyone has seen the winning movies. 

None of the ten highest grossing movies of last year were nominated for Best Picture.

Instead Licorice Pizza, about a twenty-something woman’s relationship with a teenage boy, was. 

But hey, what’s a spot of casual peadophilia when it’s shot in art-house sepia?  

All this fades into irrelevance though in the face of Will’s violence.

That clip will forever haunt the Oscars’ legacy – that is, if there’s another show.

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