Amy Schumer Wouldn’t Have Kicked Will Smith Out of Oscars, But Tells Howard Stern ‘It Was Shocking’

Amy Schumer Wouldn’t Have Kicked Will Smith Out of Oscars, But Tells Howard Stern ‘It Was Shocking’

It’s been more than two weeks since Will Smith stormed the stage at the 2022 Academy Awards to slap comedian Chris Rock in the face, but one of the show’s co-hosts, Amy Schumer, still can’t get it out of her head. “It was shocking and it was a bummer,” Schumer told Howard Stern on his SiriusXM show on Wednesday morning (April 13), describing how it felt to see her good friend and fellow stand-up superstar get physically assaulted and then berated by Smith after Rock told a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith‘s hair during the telecast.

Schumer said that she would not have thrown Smith out for the incident (“I didn’t have that feeling”), in which the rapper-turned-actor also twice shouted “keep my wife’s name out your f—in’ mouth!” on live TV after smacking Rock. But after saying that she was made fun of for earlier saying the incident was “traumatizing,” Schumer explained it wasn’t just shocking to her, but also to everyone in the room at the Dolby Theatre that night. “I don’t think it was traumatizing for me, I think it was traumatizing for all of us… It was upsetting as a person,” she said.

And though she counts Rock as one of her closest friends, Schumer said she also worried that there was perhaps something more to Smith’s actions than met the eye. “I just thought, ‘oh my God Will Smith’… I was in an abusive relationship years ago… I thought right away, ‘Oh my God, Will Smith must be in so much pain.’ I felt bad for him too. That’s probably not the right instinct,” she said of the actor, who later took the stage and tearfully apologized to the Academy and his fellow nominees, but not Rock, while accepting the best actor award for his leading role in King Richard; a day later Smith apologized to Rock on Instagram.

Schumer also acknowledged that the slap took away from a special moment for another very close friend of hers, Questlove. The Roots drummer accepted the best documentary feature award for his acclaimed film Summer of Soul right after Smith’s slap threw the broadcast into chaos. “To see your friend get hit and, also Will smith, who we’ve all loved forever… I haven’t been around much violence, it was upsetting for so many reasons… it was shocking and it was a bummer,” she said, adding that as a performer having a video of getting slapped on stage out in the world forever is a “nightmare.”

Rock has not spoken publicly about the incident to date, though he has lightly acknowledged it on his current U.S. stand-up tour and Schumer said it’s not really her place to dissect what he friend is feeling or how he should deal with it on stage. She said she saw him right after the slap and they’ve texted “a little bit” since then.

When Stern asked her how Rock should handle it comedically on stage, she said, “he knows what he’s doing. I have a bad poker face and I need to share what’s on my mind in a compulsive way. But I think he’s really smart. He’s not really addressing it. He hasn’t spoken publicly about it so I shouldn’t speak for him. He’s a pro, he’s a sweetheart.”

In an interesting wrinkle to the story, Schumer dove into a plot line on her current Hulu series, Life & Beth, in which she for the first time dramatizes her real-life struggle with a disorder she’s battled since childhood: trichotillomania. On the show, her character begins to compulsively pull out her hair, causing the young Amy to develop bald patches on her head that resulted in her having to wear a wig to school, which causes ridicule from her classmates.

Schumer told Stern that the subject of the joke, Pinkett Smith’s bald head — a result of the Red Table Talk host’s battle with the autoimmune disease alopecia, which causes hair loss — was another reason she was “triggered” that night. “It was about Jada’s hair!… You know, hair loss,” she said. “Growing up if somebody talked about my hair it was like the biggest fear of my life and I’m sure that’s a big deal for their family.”

For the record, she said, she pre-cleared her jokes about Leonardo DiCaprio’s dating habits and a Smith bit she did about Hollywood ignoring women’s stories for so long, in which she added, “but this year we finally got a movie about the incredible Williams’ sister’s… dad.” The Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences announced last week that Smith will not be permitted to attend any Academy events or programs for the next 10 years.

Amy Schumer Wouldn’t Have Kicked Will Smith Out of Oscars, But Tells Howard Stern ‘It Was Shocking’ It’s been more than two weeks since Will Smith stormed the stage at the 2022 Academy Awards to slap comedian Chris Rock in the face, but one of the show’s co-hosts, Amy Schumer, still can’t get it out of…