Jada Pinkett Smith is speaking out about the aftermath of her estranged husband Will Smith’s infamous Oscars incident.
“It was ridiculous in how far it went,” Pinkett Smith, 52, told People in their latest issue while reflecting on rumors that she was somehow to blame for Smith, 55, slapping Chris Rock at the March 2022 awards show.
The actress continued: “But I also understood at the same time, considering the false narrative that I had cheated on Will or I was, like, some adulteress.”
“When we just look at human nature … when you look at the breadcrumbs, people need something to blame,” she explained.
Smith walked onstage at the 94th Academy Awards and struck Rock, 58, across the face after the comedian made a joke comparing Pinkett Smith to G.I. Jane — Demi Moore’s titular character from the 1997 film — due to her shaved head. (Pinkett Smith has alopecia, a condition which causes hair loss.)
After slapping Rock, Smith returned to his seat and mouthed, “Keep my wife’s name out your f-king mouth.”
“I made a choice on my own from my own experiences, from my history with Chris. Jada had nothing to do with it,” Smith said in a July 2022 video shared via his Facebook page and YouTube.
Rock, for his part, has suggested that the underlying cause of the slap was problems in Smith and Pinkett Smith’s marriage.
“Everybody that really knows knows I had nothing to do with that s-t. I didn’t have any ‘entanglements.’ … She hurt him way more than I ever did,” Rock said of the incident in his Netflix comedy special Chris Rock: Selective Outrage, which hit the streaming platform in March.
Rock was referring to a July 2020 episode of Red Table Talk in which Pinkett Smith opened up about having an “entanglement” with singer August Alsina while she and Smith were on a break. She noted at the time that she and the Oscar winner were eventually able to repair their relationship.
Pinkett Smith recently shared new insight into her dynamic with Smith by revealing that the pair have been separated since 2016 — six years before the Oscars slap.
“I think by the time we got to 2016, we were just exhausted with trying. I think we were both kind of just still stuck in our fantasy of what we thought the other person should be,” she said in a Wednesday, October 11, clip from an upcoming interview with Today. The full interview will air on NBC Friday, October 13, at 8 p.m. ET.