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Chris Rock hints Will Smith’s slap trauma behind him opting out of 2023 Oscars

Comedian Chris Rock has hinted at how Will Smith’s Oscar slap has possibly left him traumatised as he explained why he refused an offer to host next year’s award ceremony.

During his stand-up comedy show in Phoenix, Arizona, the 57-year-old addressed the slap again, reports aceshowbiz.com.

According to The Arizona Republic, the ‘Saturday Night Live’ alum said he had been asked to host the upcoming Academy Awards ceremony, but he turned down the offer, comparing returning to the event to returning to a crime scene, reports aceshowbiz.

Rock allegedly referenced the murder trial of O.J. Simpson, who was accused of killing his former wife Nicole Brown Simpson but later acquitted.

During the trial, it was argued that her murder began by Nicole leaving a pair of glasses at an Italian restaurant. Chris said returning to the award ceremony would be like asking Nicole “to go back to the restaurant”.

He also said he received an offer to do a Super Bowl commercial following the incident, but he “profanely” refused as well.

While Rock has not formally addressed the slap, he didn’t shy away from the topic during his tour. When he mentioned how a person could get famous for being a victim, someone in the sold-out concert asked Rock to “talk about it”.

Responding to the inquiry, the ‘Grown Ups’ star said the blow from Smith hurt.

“He’s bigger than me,” he quipped.

“The state of Nevada would not sanction a fight between me and Will Smith.”

Smith recently apologised again for slapping Rock at the March ceremony after the latter joked about Jada Pinkett Smith’s shaved head.

In a video, the 53-year-old said he was “deeply remorseful” and claimed: “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 apologise to you’. My behaviour was unacceptable and I’m here whenever you are ready to talk.”

Smith also apologised to Rock’s mother and entire family, saying: “I just didn’t realize how many people got hurt in that moment, so I want to apologise to Chris’s mother. I want to apologise.”

Rock has not responded to Will’s public apology.

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