"You just belittled him in front of millions of people that watch the show," Chris Rock's brother, Kennedy said.
Chris Rock had no idea about Jada Pinkett Smith's condition, and he wouldn't have joked about it had he known, said Rock's younger brother, Kenny, according to PEOPLE.
At the 94th annual Academy Awards on March 27, Rock, 57, presented the award for Best Documentary Feature, cracking jokes before handing out the accolade. Motioning to Pinkett-Smith in the audience, he said, "Jada, I love you. G.I. Jane 2, can't wait to see it," likening her shaved head to Demi Moore's hairdo in the 1997 movie G.I. Jane. When Pinkett-Smith appeared unamused by the gag, Rock said, "That was a nice one!"
Moments later, Smith, 53, walked onstage and struck Rock, who was left speechless. Once in his seat, Smith shouted, "Keep my wife's name out of your f-----g mouth!"
Even though Pinkett-Smith has spoken about her alopecia before, Rock's brother Kenny, 42, told the Los Angeles Times he wasn't aware: "The joke was funny. It wasn't hilarious funny, but I know that if he knew that she had alopecia ... he wouldn't make a joke about that. But he didn't know."
Kenny then spoke about how he felt watching his older brother get hit on tv, saying that "It eats at me watching it over and over again because you've seen a loved one being attacked and there's nothing you can do about it."
Chris Rock’s brother would like to see Will Smith stripped of his new best actor Oscar https://t.co/Foi8Egd9hj— CNN (@CNN) April 6, 2022
"Every time I'm watching the videos, it's like a rendition that just keeps going over and over in my head. My brother was no threat to him and you just had no respect for him at that moment. You just belittled him in front of millions of people that watch the show," he said.
Soon after the assault, Smith won the Best Actor award for King Richard, and even in his acceptance speech, he did not apologize to Rock, though he did the next day in a statement, admitting, "I was out of line and I was wrong." Smith explained, "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."
"The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home," said Smith, later adding, "Change takes time and I am committed to doing the work to ensure that I never again allow violence to overtake reason."
Said Kenny, "I might have looked at it differently had he initially apologized when he got on the stage and cried and accepted the award, but he didn't, so, right there that tells me that it is something else."
Will Smith needs to thank his lucky stars that Chris Rock is as civilized and sophisticated and humble and intelligent and compassionate as he is. Because if it had been ANYBODY I know, Will Smith would have never made it back to his table.— Stevie Van Zandt (@StevieVanZandt) April 2, 2022
As for Smith's apology, Kenny said, "No, I don't accept it because I don't think it was genuine. I think his publicist and the people that work under him probably advised him to do that."
"He belittled my brother," he added. "He had no respect for him. In my opinion, he embarrassed himself by doing that and his legacy by doing that."
EXCLUSIVE: “Because Chris handled the moment with such grace and aplomb, it allowed the show to continue."— ABC News (@ABC) April 1, 2022
Oscars producer Will Packer credits Chris Rock with saving the show following Will Smith incident: "He certainly saved what was left of it." https://t.co/kTf4SuI6qo pic.twitter.com/kMxjqNQbOd
Cover Image Source: Getty Images | Photo by Neilson Barnard