Before the premiere on Wednesday Conversation at the Red Table Discussing hair loss, Jada Pinkett Smith briefly addressed the Oscars incident between husband Will Smith and Chris Rock.
“It’s really important Conversation at the Red Table on alopecia. Considering what I’ve been through with my own health and what happened at the Oscars, thousands have reached out to me with their stories. I’m taking this moment to give our alopecia family the opportunity to talk about what it’s like to have this condition and educate people about what alopecia actually is,” Pinkett Smith said at the top of Facebook Watch -Show.
“Well, on Oscar night, my deepest hope is that these two intelligent, capable men have an opportunity to heal, speak out, and reconcile,” she added. “The state of the world today, we need them both. In fact, we all need each other more than ever. Until then, Will and I will continue to do what we’ve been doing for the past 28 years, which is keep figuring out what’s called life. Thank you for listening.”
Speaking to Pinkett Smith in the crowd while receiving the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature at the 2022 Academy Awards, Rock joked that he was excited for her upcoming sequel GI Jane – a reference to the actress’ shaved head. After Rock’s comment, Smith came on stage and slapped Rock in the face.
Smith, who won the Oscar for Best Actor King Richard later that same evening, announced the following week that he was resigning from the Academy pending an investigation into his actions during the ceremony. The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences eventually ruled that Smith would be banned from returning to the Oscars or attending any other Academy events for the next 10 years.
The day after the ceremony, Smith apologized to Instagram for his “unacceptable and inexcusable” behavior at the Academy Awards and Rock, writing, “Jokes at my expense are part of the job, but a joke about Jada’s health is too much for me to bear.” and I reacted emotionally. I want to apologize to you publicly, Chris. I was out of line and I was wrong. I’m embarrassed and my actions were no indication of the man I want to be. In a world of love and kindness there is no place for violence.”
Wednesday’s comments marked the first time Pinkett Smith addressed the incident directly. At the top of the Conversation at the Red Table In the season premiere episode, an on-screen message appeared that read, “In light of what has happened over the past few weeks, the Smith family has focused on deep healing. Some of the discoveries surrounding our healing will be shared around the table, when the time calls.” The message did not specify at the time when the physical altercation between Smith and Rock would be addressed.
During Wednesday Conversation at the Red Table In the discussion, Pinkett Smith, along with her daughter Willow and her mother Adrienne Banfield Norris, spoke about the importance of giving the alopecia community a voice and an opportunity to tell their story. Pinkett Smith said the “hardest part” for her is that her hair “comes and goes.” She went on to explain that she feels scared and wonders, “What will my hair look like today?”
“People don’t understand what alopecia is and they don’t understand the implications of it,” Pinkett Smith said.
The hosts were later joined by the mother of 12-year-old Rio Allred, who suffered from alopecia and died by suicide after being bullied. As she shared Rio’s story, her mother, Niki Ball, reflected on how the Oscars incident happened almost two weeks after her death. “People will google, ‘What is alopecia?’ Like, “What’s this we’ve never heard of?” It’s not a joke,” she said.
Also during the episode, a woman who has worked in the hair industry for more than a decade and former NBA player Charlie Villanueva spoke about their alopecia journeys, and a top hair surgeon broke down the different types of alopecia.