The man has jokes. Trevor Noah isn’t done discussing Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the 94th annual Academy Awards — and this time, the Daily Show host got in some jabs about the King Richard star’s punishment from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.
While the comedian, 38, initially told his talk show audience on Monday, April 12, that he first thought that the consequences the Academy imposed on Smith, 53, were “ridiculous” — the actor has been banned from attending the Oscars for 10 years — he quickly came to the conclusion that the punishment was actually a “favor” to the Academy Award winner.
“I got into the details and I realized he gets to keep his Oscar and he can still win Oscars even though he’s banned. … This is a favor!” Noah quipped. “Will Smith doesn’t have to go to the ceremony! Yeah, he doesn’t have to get dressed up. He doesn’t have to sit through a bunch of boring awards that he doesn’t care about. He doesn’t have to pretend to be happy when he loses.”
The Academy announced Smith’s punishment on Friday, April 8, noting that “Mr. Smith shall not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs, in person or virtually, including but not limited to the Academy Awards.” For his part, the Fresh Prince of Bel-Air alum — who resigned from the Academy the week before, in light of the incident — told Page Six, “I accept and respect the Academy’s decision.”
On Monday, Noah continued the bit by quipping that the Academy should have run Smith’s sanction by Rock himself — for good reason.
“I … think [the Academy] should’ve at least consulted Chris Rock before choosing the punishment. Because if Will were still going to the Oscars, that’s at least four hours where Chris Rock knows where he is,” the South Africa native cracked. “Now, he could be anywhere.”
Ultimately, Noah believes the board “should have hired Will Smith to replace the wrap-up music at awards shows,” he joked. “Do you know how quickly winners will finish up their speeches when they see Will Smith coming from the side of the stage?”
The talk show host has spoken out about the Oscars drama multiple times since Smith smacked Rock, 57, across the face at the March 27 awards show.
“Wtaf?????” Noah tweeted immediately after the incident. “That wasn’t scripted????? 😳😳😳😳😳😳😳😳.”
A week later, when the comedian hosted the 2022 Grammys, he once again referenced the slap heard ‘round the world.
“We’re gonna be listening to some music. We’re gonna be dancing, we’re gonna be singing,” Noah said at the April 3 ceremony, deadpanning, “We’re gonna be keeping people’s names out of our mouths and we’re gonna be giving out awards.”
This quip was in reference to what the Ali star yelled at the Everybody Hates Chris alum at the Academy Awards.
After taking the stage to slap Rock for joking about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head (she has alopecia), Smith returned to his seat and yelled at the presenter, twice, to “keep my wife’s name out your f—king mouth.”
The “Miami” rapper, who won the best actor Oscar later that evening for his starring role in King Richard, publicly apologized to Rock the next day.
“Violence in all of its forms is poisonous and destructive. My behavior at last night’s Academy Awards was unacceptable and inexcusable,” he wrote via Instagram on March 28. “I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness.”