Will Smith and Jessica Chastain: The Stars of “Slap” Night

Illustrated by Jeannette Khouri
Illustrated by Jeannette Khouri

Will Smith and Jessica Chastain: The Stars of “Slap” Night

A week after Will Smith slapped Chris Rock at the Oscars, Hollywood was still abuzz with activity until the “King Richard” star resigned from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, which puts on the Oscars.

“The list of those I have hurt is long and includes Chris, his family, many of my dear friends and loved ones, all those in attendance, and global audiences at home,” Smith said in a statement.

Will Smith has received another blow in the chain reaction of his slap at comedian Chris Rock at the opening ceremony of the 94th Academy Awards, in which he won the Best Lead Actor award for his movie King Richard. The company that produced his new movie, “Fast and Loose,” decided to stop working and filming due to the slapping incident, and director David Leitch withdrew from the film because of his objection to Smith's behavior at an Oscar party.

Smith’s new movie, entitled “Emancipatio,” which deals with the subject of slavery and its laws, had entered post-production and was scheduled to be shown in early 2022, but so far the Apple+ platform has not set a date for its release and has not commented on the slapping incident.

Will Smith went from beloved film favourite to Hollywood villain after the big slap.   For the first time in his career, Smith won an Oscar for Best Actor for the movie "King Richard" in which he played the of the father of American tennis players, Serena and Venus Williams.

Smith began his career as a hip-hop singer during the eighties, which gave him the opportunity to appear on American television and to attract the attention of a producer who gave give him a major role in the movie "Made in America" in 1993.

Smith gained real fame when he co-starred with Martin Lawrence in their famous movie "Bad Boys," which is considered one of the most famous action films of the nineties. Soon Smith officially became a star due to the huge revenues that the film earned around in the world.

"Bad Boys" was not an exception, as Smith followed it with two films that achieved greater success and revenues totaling hundreds of millions.  These were two science fiction films both with the same idea about the invasion of aliens to Earth, but with two different treatments. The first was "Independence Day" in 1996, and the second was "Men in Black" in 1997 with Tommy Lee Jones.

After that, Smith continued to appear in successful films, which made him one of the most famous and most successful black actors in the history of cinema.

He was nominated for an Academy Award twice, the first for the movie “Ali” in 2001, and the second for the humanistic movie “The Pursuit of Happyness” in 2006.

On the other hand, Jessica Chastain won the best actress Oscar for her performance as televangelist and queer icon Tammy Faye Bakker in the biopic “The Eyes of Tammy Faye.” It is Chastain’s first-ever Oscar, after earning nominations for supporting actress for 2011’s “The Help” and best actress in 2012’s “Zero Dark Thirty.” Chastain was a favorite to win after she took home best actress at the SAG Awards as well as the Critics’ Choice Awards.

Chastain is a 45-year-old actress (born March 24, 1977), producer, and outspoken advocate for women and minorities' rights who has received numerous awards and nominations.

She needed only an Oscar to launch her name as a big star, and here she is receiving the award amid a fierce competition between four of the most capable actresses in the world: Nicole Kidman, Olivia Colman, Penelope Cruz and Kristen Stewart, the lovable young woman who played Princess Diana in the movie "Spencer." The latter has won huge prizes and critical acclaim.

Chastain was able to achieve a well-deserved victory for several reasons, perhaps the most important of which is her strong belief in the character, as she bought the rights to transform the life of the real character who is the subject of the film, and then decided to produce it through her company.  Of course, she was ready to do anything to make the film come out and her role is wonderful.

Raised by a single mother who struggled to make ends meet, Oscar-winning actress Jessica Chastain dropped out of high school because of too many absences before enrolling at Sacramento City College, where she joined the debate team and became involved with the drama program. It was at Sacramento City College that Chastain continued to pursue her love of acting.

Chastain belongs to the school of “full reincarnation,” and was described by the great director Guillermo del Toro as being "like a chameleon" who changes her skin with the change of the characters she plays.

She began her artistic career and played the role of Juliet in a version of the play "Romeo and Juliet" in 1998. She is a theater actress who participated in a number of important plays written by Oscar Wilde and Anton Chekhov, and appeared on the cinema screen for the first time in 2008 in the movie "Julienne."

As well as “The Eyes of Tammy Faye,” Chastain has recently starred in a number of on-screen roles, including the 2021 TV mini-series “Scenes from a Marriage,” as well as films such as “The Forgiven,” “The 355,” and the series “George and Tammy”.

Outside of acting, Chastain founded the film and TV production company Freckle Films in 2016.

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