During a Wednesday episode of “The Howard Stern Program,” Stern slammed what he perceives to be a showbiz double standard.
“This guy jumped up on stage and attacked Dave Chappelle,” Stern said. “As soon as that happened, did they let him go back to his seat and laugh and sit next to his wife and then give them an award? No! They took him backstage, they broke his arms and hands so bad.”
Stern was talking about the viral occurrence in which Isaiah Lee, 23, tackled Dave Chappelle with a fake weapon during the “Netflix Is a Joke” event at Los Angeles’ Hollywood Bowl.
The attacker was subsequently subdued by security and arrested, while A-listers such as Chris Rock and Jamie Foxx tended to Chappelle. Lee has since been charged with a felony assault charge involving a deadly weapon.
After Dave Chappelle was attacked by an audience member on stage, Chris Rock appeared on stage, grabbed the mic and asked, “Was that Will Smith?” 😭pic.twitter.com/5cruVk4Vsp
— XXL Magazine (@XXL) May 4, 2022
Stern pointed out that it was hypocritical for the same standards to not apply to Will Smith.
“Unlike the Academy Awards, Jamie Foxx came running out on stage and helped Dave Chappelle,” the entertainer ranted. “At the Academy Awards, everyone came over and consoled Will Smith — because it was live television and Hollywood didn’t know what to do about Will Smith.”
Smith was permitted to stay at the ceremony and accept his Best Actor Oscar, for which he received a standing ovation. Smith was also comforted by celebrities instead of his victim, Chris Rock.
Man That Attacked Dave Chappelle At His Show At Hollywood Bowl Has Hands Broken and Dislocated pic.twitter.com/ZvPgjdV5gz
— raphousetv (@raphousetv2) May 4, 2022
— Runawa777 (@runawa777) May 4, 2022
Naturally, some people may find it no surprise that a well-known actor was treated differently than a non-celebrity. However, Stern maintained that Hollywood shouldn’t “treat Will Smith any different than they did the Chappelle attacker.”
“The audience at the Oscars gave Will Smith a standing ovation after the attack, that’s the truth,” the radio personality vented. “It’s on film, it’s not fake news. They didn’t break Will’s hands, they shook them and it’s wrong.”
In summary, Stern found the discrepancy in consequences indicative of “how f – – ked up Hollywood is.”
“Some people in the audience at the Academy Awards still should be very ashamed of themselves. I hope they are,” he said.
Smith’s crime, of course, did not go unpunished: in April, he was sentenced to a ten-year ban from the Academy Awards ceremony.
Chappelle is not disturbed by the Tuesday assault.
“The performances by Chappelle at the Hollywood Bowl were epic,” his rep, Carla Sims, told the Hollywood Reporter. “Dave Chappelle celebrated four nights of comedy and music, setting record-breaking sales for a comedian at the Hollywood Bowl. This run ties Chappelle with Monty Python for the most headlined shows by any comedian at the Hollywood Bowl, reaching 70K fans of diverse backgrounds during the first ‘Netflix Is A Joke: The Festival,’ and he refuses to allow last night’s incident to overshadow the magic of this historic moment.”
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