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Chris Rock Reportedly Says He Was Asked To Host The Oscars, But He Passed

Comedian Chris Rock, who was infamously slapped by actor Will Smith at the 2022 Oscars, reportedly told an audience in Phoenix that he had been offered the job of hosting the 2023 Academy Awards, but turned it down. .

According to the local newspaper, the republic of arizonaRock made the comments at his sold-out Sunday night show.

The newspaper reported that the comedian said hosting would be like returning to the scene of a crime. The Arizona Republic said Rock referred to the OJ Simpson murder trial and said hosting the awards ceremony would be like asking Nicole Brown Simpson to “go back to the restaurant.”

Brown Simpson, who was killed in 1994 outside her Los Angeles home along with 25-year-old restaurant waiter Ron Goldman, had left a pair of eyeglasses in the restaurant the night she died.

Representatives for Rock did not immediately respond to TODAY’s request for comment. The academy declined to comment publicly.

Will Smith appears to slap Chris Rock onstage during the 94th Annual Academy Awards at Dolby Theater on March 27, 2022 in Hollywood, California.Neilson Barnard/Getty Images

Smith slapped the rock at the awards show on March 27. Rock made a joke about the bald head of Smith’s wife, actor Jada Pinkett Smith. Pinkett Smith has alopecia, an autoimmune disorder that causes hair loss.

After the prank, after Pinkett Smith rolled her eyes, Smith went onstage and slapped Rock. She went back to her seat and yelled at Rock to “keep my wife’s name out of the m——- her mouth” at her.

The board of governors of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences would then bar Smith from attending the Academy Awards ceremony, or any other academy event or program, for the next 10 years. Smith would later apologize for his actions in a video.

“I can tell all of you: There is not a part of me that thinks that was the right way to behave at the time,” Smith said in the July 29 video. “There’s not a part of me that thinks that’s the optimal way to handle a feeling of disrespect or insults.”

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