Whoopi Goldberg Reacts to Will Smith Slapping Chris Rock and If He Should Keep His Oscar

The former Oscars host is weighing in on the incident.

Whoopi Goldberg is giving her take on the Oscars incident between Will Smith and Chris Rock. On Monday's episode of The View, the former Oscars host and Academy Award winner guessed that "a lot of stuff probably built up" for Smith when he slapped Rock onstage at the 2022 Academy Awards.

The incident occurred when Rock, a presenter at this year's ceremony, made a joke about Jada Pinkett Smith's hair. The actress has spoken publicly about having alopecia, a hair loss condition that she was diagnosed with in 2018.

"I think he overreacted," Goldberg said of Smith, before pointing out that Rock previously made a joke at the couple's expense when he hosted the show in 2016. At the time, Rock quipped, "Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna's panties. I wasn't invited!"

"In 2016, Chris was the host of the Oscars that year, and it was funny. I would've been a little annoyed," Goldberg said. "But [this year] I think [Smith] had one of those moments where it's like, 'G-D-it. Just stop. Just stop!'"

After the incident, Smith did win the Best Actor Oscar for his role in King Richard. It was the "pressure" of his approaching category, Goldberg speculated, that played a role in his response to Rock's joke.

"You've got all the pressure of hoping that you win and trying to keep your face. I get it," Goldberg said. "Not everybody acts the way we'd like them to under pressure, some people just snap. He snapped."

She added, "I don't know if they spoke, or if he apologized or not. All I know is, sometimes you get to a point and you behave badly."

Goldberg went on to praise Rock, stating, "I think it's remarkable and wonderful that Chris Rock did not take it to that other place it could've gone."

Rock declined to press charges for the incident, the LAPD told ET. Given that, Goldberg said that she believes that Smith should be allowed to keep his Oscar.

"We’re not going to take that Oscar from him," she said. "There will be consequences I’m sure, but I don’t think that’s what they’re going to do, particularly because Chris said, 'Listen, I’m not pressing any charges.'"

As for what the Academy thinks, they posted a statement to Twitter, which read, "The Academy does not condone violence of any form. Tonight we are delighted to celebrate our 94th Academy Awards winners, who deserve this moment of recognition from their peers and movie lovers around the world."

It wasn't just Goldberg who weighed in on the incident during Monday's episode of The ViewJoy Behar said that, as she watched it play out on TV, she was thinking, "Comedians are in danger everywhere."

"They want us to be edgy, they want us to go out there and say things that other people are just thinking, they want us to take a risk, and then they get mad," she said. "That's what's happening lately -- people get mad... To actually hit somebody was shocking, frankly."

Ana Navarro, meanwhile, pointed out that "hitting somebody is a crime."

"It was men behaving badly," she said. "I don't think it's equivalent, because Chris Rock is a comedian. It was a joke. It was a lame joke. It was a joke in very poor taste... That being said, nothing, nothing, nada, condones violence in this form."

Sunny Hostin said she "was embarrassed for Will" and "horrified for Chris" as the incident played out. She went on to criticize Smith for not apologizing to Rock during his acceptance speech, instead offering apologies to only his peers and the Academy.

"I thought Chris was the one that deserved an apology for taking the high road," Hostin said. "He was slapped in front of millions of people internationally and he took the high road in his response. I think that Will was immature, I think he was childish, and I think he was violent... That's something that we tell our children not to do."

"When you live publicly, you don't have the right to all of sudden decide to execute violence," she added. "And I have to say, that was a show of toxic masculinity. If he was offended and felt emasculated by [Oscars host] Regina Hall's joke or by Chris Rock's joke, you don't act out in violence. That is not a show of love. That's a show of violence."