Will Smith recently shared an emotional video apologizing to Chris Rock after slapping the comedian at the 2022 Oscars ceremony, however, a source claimed Jada Pinkett Smith is the reason he decided to open up about the incident.
An insider told Us Weekly that Smith “never wanted to” publicly apologize, but Pinkett Smith convinced her husband to reconsider for the sake of her talk show.
“Jada has also been pushing Will to apologize because it has become this really dark cloud over her ‘Red Table Talk’ series,” the source said.
Smith has reportedly been “in hell” following the infamous slap and tried to keep a low profile after the incident. “His team had hoped that the controversy would die down, but it just hasn’t,” the insider shared. “It would be impossible for him to move forward successfully unless he [addressed the slap].”
News about what led to Smith’s apology comes after a source told People the actor regrets slapping Rock at the Oscars.
“From a person who has never displayed anything like [the slap], he’s very aware that isn’t someone he will ever be again,” the insider explained.
“He’s deeply remorseful, he is still doing a lot of work, and he’s also human and made a mistake. He’s going to move forward with the same positivity that he always had.”
The source noted that Smith was determined to learn from the incident. “If you spend your life beating yourself up over one thing, then it’s really hard to move forward as the positive, joyful person that you know you are,” the insider said.
“But he’s also in a very human place, recognizing that mistake and really looking at it and not brushing over it. He really needed to do the work, and that was very important to him.”
During the 94th Oscar Awards ceremonies, Smith walked on stage and slapped Rock after he made a joke about Pinkett’s hair. The actress, who shaved her head at the time, suffers from alopecia.
Following the incident, Smith resigned from the Academy and was banned from attending the award ceremony for 10 years.