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Will Smith's altercation with Chris Rock won't be shown during RTÉ's airing of Oscars tonight

Smith took to the stage after Rock made a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith.

Will Smith, right, hits presenter Chris Rock on stage while presenting the award for best documentary feature at the Oscars
Will Smith, right, hits presenter Chris Rock on stage while presenting the award for best documentary feature at the Oscars
Image: Chris Pizzello via PA Images

RTÉ HAS CONFIRMED the incident in which Will Smith stormed the stage and hit comedian Chris Rock will not be shown during its airing of the Oscars 2022 highlights programme tonight. 

The actor took to the stage after Rock made a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith.

Smith, who won his first Academy Award for King Richard, appeared to take offence to a gag Rock made about Pinkett Smith’s short haircut.

RTÉ has confirmed that the altercation will not be shown during its airing of the Oscars 2022 highlights programme this evening. 

The broadcaster said in a statement to The Journal: “RTÉ has acquired the Oscars 2022 highlights programme which airs tonight on RTÉ2 at 9:35pm.

“The programme is produced by the Academy and they make the decision on what content makes the final edit of the programme.

“RTÉ along with all the other international broadcasters who acquire the programme have no have no say in the final edit produced for broadcast.”

Pinkett Smith has previously spoken about her struggles with alopecia and said it is what prompted her to shave her head.

Referring to Pinkett Smith’s buzzcut, Rock said: “Jada, can’t wait for GI Jane 2”, prompting the actress to roll her eyes.

However, Smith walked up on stage and appeared to hit Rock before returning to his seat and shouting twice: “Keep my wife’s name out of your f****** mouth.”

The altercation left Rock shocked and flustered as he tried to resume presenting the best documentary feature category.

After regaining his composure the comedian remarked to the audience: “That was the greatest night in the history of television.”

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The incident cast a cloud over Smith’s acceptance speech for his first ever Oscar, after he was named best actor for his portrayal of Richard Williams, the father of tennis stars Venus and Serena Williams, in King Richard.

Smith apologised to both the Academy and his fellow nominees, but not to Rock, as he collected his gong, joking that he “looks like the crazy father.”

Elsewhere in the ceremony Kenneth Branagh won the Oscar for his screenplay for Belfast, while Coda won best picture

With reporting by Gráinne Ní Aodha and Press Association

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