‘Was that Will Smith?’ Chris Rock apparently asked after fellow comedian Dave Chappelle was attacked on stage by an armed arm during his show in Los Angeles on Tuesday. Rock’s comment was a dig at actor Will Smith, who slapped him on stage during Oscars 2022.
Chappelle was performing during ‘Netflix is a Joke Festival’ when a man got onto the stage and tackled him. The man, whose identity was not revealed, was then dragged away by security as he attempted to flee. Videos of the incident have gone viral on social media.
The LAPD confirmed that they had taken a man into custody in connection with the incident. They said the man was armed with a replica gun “that can eject a knife blade” when discharged correctly.
Chappelle did not sustain injuries in the incident and it wasn’t clear why the man attacked the comedian.
Meanwhile, US reporter Sharon Carpenter took to social media to share her account of the incident.
“He was finishing up his performance when a man ran on-stage and lunged at him knocking him to the floor. Security and his entourage then cornered the man as Dave joked about him getting ‘stomped’ backstage,” she wrote.
Will Smith issued an apology, saying, “Jokes at my expense are a part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s medical condition was too much for me to bear and I reacted emotionally. I would like to publicly apologize to you, Chris. 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.”
He was, however, issued a 10-year ban by the film Academy.