Jimmy Kimmel opened the 95th Academy Awards last night with a few digs at Nick Cannon and last year’s unexpected scene-stealer Will Smith. His 15-minute monologue was full of jabs and jokes at various targets, but some viewers were ruffled when the late-night talk show host decided to make mention of those two specific entertainers in his speech.
During the monologue, Kimmel mentioned how expensive it was for filmmaker James Cameron to complete Avatar: The Way of Water. “Disney spent 2 billion dollars to make this movie,” he stated. “Just to break even, all of Nick Cannon’s children had to see Avatar four times — and they did, I guess.”
However, it was Kimmel’s lead-in to the evening that made headlines on Monday morning. He never explicitly mentioned Will Smith by name, but Kimmel’s barbs were clearly aimed at The Fresh Prince.
“If anyone in this theater commits an act of violence during this show,” Kimmel started, “you will be awarded the Oscars for Best Actor and be permitted to give a 19-minute speech.”
But he then proceeded to take some shots at the audience, too. Kimmel added, “that if anything unpredictable or violent happens during the ceremony, just do what you did last year: Nothing. Just sit there and do absolutely nothing. Maybe even get the assailant a hug.”
Kimmel spoke with The Hollywood Reporter a few days before the Oscars 2023 award show, and he forewarned that Smith’s debacle would undoubtedly be part of his material.
“Well, whatever I say about it, it’s going to have to be great, right?” he told THR. “Because so much has been said, and there’s so much focus on it. I obviously don’t want to make the whole monologue about that, but it would be ridiculous not to mention it.”
But see what some people on Twitter thought about Kimmel’s jokes — including Nick Cannon himself!
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