Terry Crews has given his own viewpoint regarding what happened on the Oscars’ stage between Chris Rock and Will Smith.
"Both Will Smith and Chris Rock are dear, dear friends of mine. I love them both as brothers, but there was a time in my life [where] I was Will Smith at that moment and let me tell you, I've done worse than Will--Way overkill, just…the punishment did not fit the crime," he said.
“[P]eople were like, ‘What in the world are you doing?’ My wife even had to be like, ‘You got to promise me you will never go off like this. You did not need to pick this man up and put him on his head, on the concrete.’ I couldn’t control myself. I literally had no control. If the wind went right, I was going right. If the wind went left, I was going left.”
He said that his commitment to controlling himself “saved” his life when former WME agent Adam Venit allegedly assaulted Crews at an industry party. Crews compared it to how Rock kept his composure after being slapped by Smith over a joke about Jada Pinkett-Smith‘s shaven head (Pinkett-Smith has alopecia).
He said that his commitment to controlling himself "saved" his life when former WME agent Adam Venit allegedly assaulted Crews at an industry party.
“The toughness where I grew up and the way I was, it was always the ability to strike, the ability to punch, the ability to set things straight, to even the score,” he said. “But the true definition of toughness was what Chris did in taking a punch and then holding everything together and then showing tremendous endurance and resilience in the middle of obstacles…I’m very thankful to Chris, but I also understand Will. I’m not [one] to demonize Will at all because I was there.”
Crews also said that people should use this moment to understand what makes people "go off for no reason and not even understand why they're doing it," saying that it's a problem that is throughout the entertainment, politics, and sports industries.
He referenced his personal stories in his memoir, Tough, showing his personal growth from violent tendencies.
“I have people now that can’t even imagine the things I did in the book that look at me and I’m like, ‘Hey man, that was me. And I have to let you know,'” he said. “And this is the same place I feel Will is in, and because people still are trying hard to rectify the Will Smith they knew with that person that was there at the Academy Awards, but he’s the same person, you know what I mean? We all have to understand that that could be any of us.”
He also addressed the tendency for social media to "create villains and heroes real quick and everything's black and white," especially since "everything is done in like a hundred characters."
“But there’s a lot of nuance. This is where a nice, long talk needs to happen. You can’t blurb this at all,” said Crews.