The 2023 Oscar awards went on air on Sunday night, March 12 and the ceremony executive producer and host Jimmy Kimmel’s wife has revealed some secrets from the live telecast.
Kimmel’s wife Molly McNearney shared that there were certainly more of Will Smith jokes that were removed from the final telecast of the 95th Academy Awards.
Kimmel, 55, hosted the star-studded ceremony, one year after Smith slapped Chris Rock onstage when Rock, 58, made a joke about Smith’s wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.
McNearney, 45, explained why her husband did not go ‘harder’ on Smith-Rock slap-gate. “We didn’t want to make this year all about last year,” she told Variety.
“I cannot tell you how many Will Smith jokes we had that then we got rid of. We think that only the best for that room made it. There were certainly some that went harder, but we didn’t think that was our place to do that. That should be Chris Rock, not us.”
McNearney admitted they didn’t want to ignore the incident altogether, “we really liked the idea of making fun of the reaction to it last year,” adding that, “I think we’re all still in a bit of shock of how that went down and how after watching that violence everyone had to then sit through an acceptance speech.”
Kimmel joked during his opening monologue on Sunday night, “We know this is a special night for you. We want you to have fun. We want you to feel safe. And most importantly, we want me to feel safe. So we have strict policies in place. If anyone in this theater commits an act of violence at any point during the show, you will be awarded the Oscar for Best Actor and permitted to give a 19-minute-long speech.”