Not long ago, the world was stunned when actor Will Smith stormed the stage during this year’s Academy Awards — also called the Oscars — and smacked Chris Rock on the face.
He had returned to his seat in the audience soon after and spat out a warning, using the f-word, to the comedian, who appeared somewhat flustered after the encounter.
The genesis of the slap was Chris Rock making a joke about Will Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett’s alopecia. The comedian had made a G.I. Jane joke about Jada, and Will wasn’t having it.
The “King Richard” actor apologised for his actions, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Oscars from wielding the big stick. He was banned by the Oscars from attending its events, both remotely and in person, for ten years.
Out on his own turf, Dave Chappelle, a comedian like Chris Rock, had taken note of the incident and sought to preempt something similar from happening to him. He beefed up his security.
Besides the Oscar incident, there were other compelling reasons to do so. For one, he’s always taken jabs at trans peeps and has often been dubbed transphobic.
During his performance at Netflix is a Joke, he’d commented on how he’d beefed up his security because of the Oscar incident. Toward the end of his performance, an Oscar-like incident almost played out when 23-year-old Isaiah Lee tackled him with a fake handgun that featured a blade.
Security popped onto the stage almost instantly and not only disarmed the man but gave him a severe beating. He was last seen being moved away in a stretcher with his elbow at an odd angle.
— NUFF (@nuffsaidny) May 4, 2022
It was a close shave for Dave Chappelle, who’d joke later that the man must have been trans. At any rate, it was clear that his preemptive security measure was not in vain. The impact of his attacker driving the “gun-knife” into him is best imagined.
But the comedian had foreseen something bad and sought to protect himself before it happened. So fans can look forward to more days of Dave Chappelle.
“Will, is that you?” Chris Rock joked on the same stage after the incident, referencing Lee.