In an event made for dramatic on-stage moments, Will Smith hitting Chris Rock over a joke about Smith’s wife will go down in Oscars history.
Smith hurled vulgarities at Rock, then took the stage and hit him Sunday night, after Rock cracked a joke about actress Jada Pinkett-Smith’s hair. (Pinkett-Smith, who is now bald, suffers from alopecia.)
Smith tearfully apologized a few minutes later for hitting Rock — while, as it happens, accepting the Academy Award for Best Actor for his role in “King Richard.”
Actress Nicole Kidman’s stunned reaction to the smack instantly became meme fodder.
Pictures of actress Lupita Nyong’o’s stunned expression also made the rounds.
The incident even managed to make the late cover of the New York Post, despite everything else going on in the world.
The New York Daily News had its own take on the episode for its Monday front page.
There was also a picture doing the rounds on Twitter with a panel of 15 reactions from celebrities, billed by some as Smith-Rock shock — but in fact, the pictures were said to be from a different Oscars episode altogether, a category mix-up in 2017.
The LAPD said it was aware of Sunday’s incident and that Rock had declined to file a police report. Senior LAPD officials had earlier told NBC News that a case like this would be considered misdemeanor battery, but would require a victim wanting to press charges first.