Jada Pinkett Smith Explains How Will Smith’s Oscars Slap Saved Couple’s Marriage

Music

“It took that slap for me to see I will never leave him,” the actress says in a new interview.

Will Smith and Jada Pinkett Smith attend the 94th Annual Academy Awards at Hollywood and Highland on March 27, 2022 in Hollywood, Calif.

Mike Coppola/Getty Images

Jada Pinkett Smith is crediting Will Smith‘s Oscars slap of comedian Chris Rock with saving the couple’s marriage.

The Daytime Emmy-winning talk show host and actress opened up in an interview with the Daily Mail about how her husband’s infamous slap during the 2022 Academy Awards helped her realize that they will always be together.

“After all those years trying to figure out if I would leave Will’s side, it took that slap for me to see I will never leave him,” Pinkett Smith told the Daily Mail. “Who knows where our relationship would be if that hadn’t happened?”

In October, the 52-year-old actress revealed during a primetime special on NBC that she and Smith — who married in 1997 — separated seven years ago after the couple became “exhausted with trying” to keep their marriage together.

Pinkett Smith told NBC News’ Hoda Kotb that it was not a divorce “on paper,” but it was definitely a divorce in their minds, even as the couple continued to present a united public front.

Things changed for the couple after the I Am Legend star, 55, decided to slap Rock after the comedian made a G.I. Jane 2 joke about Pinkett Smith’s nearly bald head, which is caused by her battle with alopecia.

“I call it the ‘holy slap’ now because so many positive things came after it,” she told the Daily Mail. “I nearly didn’t even attend the Oscars that year, but I’m glad I did.”

She added, “That moment of the s— hitting the fan is when you see where you really are.”

Pinkett Smith is currently promoting her new memoir, Worthy, which was released on Oct. 17.

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