Jada Pinkett Smith Looks Back on Tupac Shakur Kiss, Will Smith Oscars Slap & More

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Jada Pinkett Smith is baring it all in the lead-up to her new memoir, Worthy.

In a primetime special on Friday (Oct. 13), the Emmy-winning actress and talk show host sat down with NBC News’ Hoda Kotb for a wide-ranging interview about her husband Will Smith’s infamous 2022 Oscars slap, kissing Tupac Shakur, and much more.


During the broadcast, titled Jada’s Story: An NBC News Special with Hoda Kotb, Pinkett Smith reflected on Smith slapping Chris Rock at the 2022 Academy Awards. The actress revealed that she didn’t realize her husband had struck Rock until a commercial break when her publicist told her, “Chris has left the building and he’s not going to press charges.”

Earlier in the week, Pinkett Smith told People that she hasn’t spoken with Rock since the incident, but that the comedian approached her shortly after the onstage slap and attempted to apologize for his G.I. Jane 2 joke about her nearly bald head, which is caused by her battle with alopecia.

“Chris came down to the end of the stage and tried to apologize to me,” the actress said. “He said, ‘I didn’t mean you any harm.’ I said, ‘I can’t talk about this now, Chris. This is some old s—.’”

Elsewhere during the TV interview, Pinkett Smith touched on her past friendship with late rap icon Tupac Shakur, whom she met in the late 1980s while attending Baltimore School for the Arts in Maryland. “Pac was new. It was my sophomore year, and he looked over, and he saw me, and he just targeted me,” she said, describing him as “charismatic” with a “beautiful smile.”

She added, “He had a little peanut head… He was just this happy, bouncy, energetic, just full of life, vibrant, you know? And I was like, ‘Whoa.’”

Pinkett Smith downplayed any romantic connection with 2Pac, but shared a story about the pair kissing on her back porch. “We both pulled back like ‘What the hell?’” she said, laughing. “It was not for either one of us.”

In a preview of the primetime special, the actress revealed that she and Smith have been separated since 2016 after the couple became “exhausted with trying” to keep their marriage together. She told Kotb that it was not a divorce “on paper,” but it was definitely a divorce in their minds, even as the couple continued to present a united public front.

Pinkett Smith new book, Worthy, is scheduled for release on Tuesday (Oct. 17).

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