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The infamous scene took place at the March 27 Oscars ceremony, before Smith’s win for Best Actor. He walked onstage and hit Rock on live television after taking issue with a joke Rock made about wife Jada Pinkett Smith‘s shaved head. (Jada, 50, lives with alopecia.)
Smith eventually apologized to the comedian in July with a video apology: “I’ve reached out to Chris and the message that came back is that he’s not ready to talk, and when he is he will reach out. So I will say to you, Chris, I apologize to you. My behavior was unacceptable, and I’m here whenever you’re ready to talk.”
Rock has since joked about the incident, and even referenced it on stage during his U.K. tour with fellow comedian Dave Chappelle, 49.
Chappelle reportedly called Smith’s action a “very strange choice,” during his set. He saluted Rock’s authenticity throughout the years before alleging that Smith “did an impression of a perfect man for 30 years,” per Deadline.
Once onstage, Rock also addressed the moment, saying, “Did that s— hurt? Goddamn right… the motherf— hit me over a bulls—t joke, the nicest joke I ever told.”
Chris Rock: Selective Outrage will be the first comedy special that Netflix will live stream in a global event. It will also be Rock’s second special on the streaming service after releasing Chris Rock: Tamborine in 2018.
“Chris Rock is one of the most iconic and important comedic voices of our generation,” Robbie Praw, Netflix vice president of stand-up and comedy formats, said in a statement in November. “We’re thrilled the entire world will be able to experience a live Chris Rock comedy event and be a part of Netflix history. This will be an unforgettable moment and we’re so honored that Chris is carrying this torch.”
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The streaming service launched a similar idea with its live, in-person comedy event Netflix is a Joke: The Festival in Spring 2022. That event featured more than 330 comedians performing shows across 35 venues in Los Angeles, according to the press release.
Chris Rock: Selective Outrage will premiere on Netflix on March 4, 2023 at 10pm ET/7pm PT.