Jada Pinkett Smith Says Will Smith Hadn’t Called Her ‘Wife’ in Years – Before Oscars Slap

Jada Pinkett Smith on Today Show (Credit: YouTube/NBC)

Jada Pinkett Smith says she was just as “shocked” as anyone when Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars.

One reason the incident caught her off guard was because Will referred to her as his “wife,” something he hadn’t said in “a long time.”

The actress recalled the moment on Friday, when the Today show aired a preview clip of an interview Jada did with Hoda Kotb to promote her new memoir Worthy, out Oct. 17.

“First of all, I’m really shocked because, mind you, I’m not there — we haven’t called each other husband and wife in a long time,” she revealed. “I’m like, ‘What is going on right now?'”

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Will Smith Slaps Chris Rock. (Credit: ABC)
Will Smith Slaps Chris Rock. (Credit: ABC)

While Chris presented an award at the ceremony, he told a joke about Jada’s shaved head — which she says is a result of hair loss from alopecia. Will walked on stage, slapped Chris, and shouted: “Keep my wife’s name out of your fu–ing mouth!”

The cameras caught Jada rolling her eyes when Chris told the joke.

“I did that eye roll not so much for me, and I think this is really important, but the fact that there could be a jab at alopecia,” the Red Table Talk alum told Kotb.

Jada also said Chris apologized for his comments moments after the incident, but she was more concerned about Will, who won an Oscar that night for his role in King Richard.

“I’m really worried for Will because I don’t know what’s going on,” she explained.

Earlier this week, Today played a clip of Jada confirming she and Will have lived “completely separate lives” for seven years.

“By the time we got to 2016, we were just exhausted with trying. I think we were both kind of just still stuck in our fantasy of what we thought the other person should be,” she said, adding that they have no plans to divorce.

Jada, 52 and Will, 55, are parents to two children — Jaden, 25, and Willow, 22, and also helped raise Will’s son Trey, 30, from a previous marriage.

You can watch the clip from Hoda Kotb’s interview with Jada Pinkett Smith below. The full interview airs Friday, on Oct. 13 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on NBC.