Will Smith fans have brought up the violent history of fellow actor Sean Penn after the “I Am Sam” actor questioned the reaction Smith received after he slapped Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards.
Penn, 63, recently spoke with Variety in an interview, where he unleashed his harsh criticism of Smith, 54, walking on stage at the 94th-Annual Academy Awards in March 2022, and slapping Rock, 58, across his face.
The slap followed Rock’s joke about Smith’s wife Jada Pinkett Smith’s bald head despite the “Set It Off” previously admitting that she shaved her head due to alopecia areata.
After Smith’s slap, he went on to win the Best Actor award for his role as Richard Williams in the 2021 biographical film “King Richard.”
The “Bad Boys” actor received a standing ovation from audience members during his emotional acceptance speech. However, Penn doesn’t seem to think it was deserved.
“I don’t know Will Smith. I met him once,” Penn told the outlet. “He seemed very nice when I met him. He was so f—–g good in ‘King Richard.’”
He continued, “So why the f–k did you just spit on yourself and everybody else with this stupid f—–g thing? Why did I go to f—–g jail for what you just did?”
In 1987, Penn was sentenced to 60 days in county jail for punching and spitting on an extra while on the movie set of “Colors.” He ended up serving 33 days out of his two-month sentence.
“And you’re still sitting there? Why are you guys standing and applauding his worst moment as a person,” Penn said.
His sharp words were shared on Hollywood Unlocked’s Instagram page, where several commenters reminded Penn of his track record with abuse.
“Sir … you PUNCHED AND SPIT on someone . He slapped him and walked away . You went apes–t on an extra . sit down you convict.”
“Doesn’t he have a long a– wrap sheet? I am confusion.”
“Sean penn the same dude that’s been beating heuxs and powdering his nose since the 80s? Naw can’t be him….”
“Because you’re a known menace Sean and you’re aging like milk.”
“He must’ve forgot he beat Madonna with a BAT ! Left came back and whooped her again.”
I don’t know if anything has ever affected white people the way Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars has affected them. Not the murder of civil rights leaders, not videos of cops killing Black folks, not January 6th. https://t.co/V41etardJr
— Rod (@rodimusprime) September 13, 2023
The Golden Globe actor had a tumultuous relationship with “Material Girl” songstress Madonna back in the late ‘80s. During their four-year marriage, allegations about Penn abusing Madonna made waves, however, Madonna denounced the claims in 2015.
“While we certainly had more than one heated argument during our marriage, Sean has never struck me, ‘tied me up,’ or physically assaulted me, any report to the contrary is completely outrageous, malicious, reckless, and false,” Madonna reportedly wrote in a statement defending her ex-husband’s character.
Though the “Like a Prayer” singer refuted ever being hit by Penn, the film director was arrested in 1988 and charged with battery for reportedly harming Madonna.
Additionally, Madonna went to the sheriff’s office and filed a complaint, suggesting that Penn had assaulted her. One week later, she withdrew her complaint. The pop icon also told Rolling Stone the following year that the events reported were made up.
Smith since has apologized for his onstage outburst at the Oscars and resigned his membership from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. The Academy has also issued a 10-year ban as Smith’s consequence.
READ MORE AT ATLANTA BLACK STAR.