Amy Schumer Says Chris Rock Maintained Composure After Oscars Slap 'Because He's a Comedian'

As a comedian, Amy Schumer says, "you're just desensitized, so you're not shocked by anything"

Amy Schumer was impressed at how her "good friend" Chris Rock kept his cool after being slapped in the face by Will Smith last month at the 2022 Academy Awards.

"The reason why Chris Rock could stand there, and get hit in the face, and then stay up there with composure and give his friend [Questlove] an Oscar is because he's a comedian," she said Wednesday on The Howard Stern Show. (Questlove won Best Documentary Feature, which Rock, 57, was presenting at the time of the incident.)

"Everything that you're afraid of happens to you while you're on stage, and then you're just desensitized, so you're not shocked by anything," added Schumer, 40, of being a comedian.

Will, 53, walked onstage at the Oscars on March 27 and struck Rock in response to a joke the comedian made about his wife Jada Pinkett Smith's shaved head. Will shouted, "Keep my wife's name out of your f---ing mouth!" to a stunned Rock, who moved the show forward by presenting the award after being initially speechless.

"It was so upsetting," Schumer told Howard Stern on Wednesday. "And people made fun of me for saying that it was traumatizing, but I don't think it was traumatizing for me — I think it was traumatizing for all of us."

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Amy Schumer; Chris Rock; Will Smith
From left: Amy Schumer; Chris Rock; Will Smith. Stefanie Keenan/VF22/WireImage for Vanity Fair; Amy Sussman/Getty Images; ANGELA WEISS/AFP via Getty Images

She also admitted it was difficult to see the behavior from Will, whom she has "loved forever" and was shocked to see react with physical violence.

"I don't remember a time I didn't think, 'I love that guy,' " Schumer said. "It was upsetting for so many reasons, and it was upsetting to everyone — everyone at home who didn't even see what I saw."

"It was shocking, and it was a bummer," she added. "For me, I had no thoughts of, like, how it affected me or my performance or anything. It was just upsetting as a person."

Schumer also said she "thought right away" that Will "must be in so much pain," and shared that she has texted with Rock since the incident. "I think he's really smart; he's not really addressing it," she said of Rock. "He's a pro. He's a sweetheart."

RELATED VIDEO: Oscars Host Amy Schumer Says She's "Triggered" and "Traumatized" Following Slapping Incident

The day after the Oscars, Will — who won Best Actor later in the ceremony — apologized to Rock in a statement, explaining he "reacted emotionally" because the "joke about Jada's medical condition was too much for me to bear." (She has been open about living with hair loss due to alopecia.)

Will has since resigned from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts and Sciences, which hosts the Oscars. The Academy also banned the actor from attending its events for the next 10 years.

At a comedy show earlier this month, Schumer said she was confident that her and her co-hosts Wanda Sykes and Regina Hall were excelling in their roles until Will got onstage and struck Rock.

"It was just a f---ing bummer. All I can say is that it was really sad, and I think it says so much about toxic masculinity. It was really upsetting," she added, per The Hollywood Reporter and E! News, before moving on to her other routines.

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