After last year’s ceremony, Smith attended the Vanity Fair after-party, where he grabbed his Oscar while sing and dance on his song “Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It”.
Kimmel also warned audience members during his monologue not to get on stage and threaten him, noting that he is protected by action stars in the room like Michael B. Jordan, Pedro Pascal, Michelle Yeoh and Andrew Garfield.
“If one of you gets mad at a joke and decides to come here and have fun with it, it won’t be easy. There are a few of my friends you’re going to have to go through first. You’re going to have to go through heavyweight champion Adonis Creed before you get to me,” Kimmel said before the broadcast cut a shot of Jordan, who plays in the Creed film franchise.
Kimmel referenced the slap again when announcing the presenters for Best Documentary Feature, which was the Rock category featured last year when Smith took the stage and slapped him. This year, Riz Ahmed and Questlove gave the award to the film Navalny.
“The next category is feature-length documentaries, which, as you may recall, is where things went off the rails last year. Hopefully tonight it goes off without a hitch. Or at least without Hitch,” Kimmel said, referring to Smith’s 2005 romantic comedy. Coupling.
Nearly two hours into the show, Kimmel gave another nod to last year’s incident, joking about how long the show was.
“That point of the show kind of makes you miss the slaps, huh?” said Kimmel.
At the end of the show, Kimmel made her final reference to last year’s slap. Leaving the stage, he walked towards a sign that read: “Number of Oscars broadcasts without incident.”
He changed the number from 000 to 001.