Chris Rock found himself back in the spotlight after a man attacked Dave Chappelle during his comedy set.
Chappelle was performing during the Netflix Is A Joke Fest at the Hollywood Bowl in L.A. on Tuesday night (May 3) when a man seated in the audience rushed on stage and tackled the comedian.
Moments after the incident, Rock briefly appeared onstage and made reference to his own experience at the Oscars when Will Smith walked on stage and slapped him in the face after he made a joke about his wife Jada Pinkett-Smith.
“Was that Will Smith?” asked Rock.
Few angles of Dave Chappelle being tackled at his comedy show and people instantly whopping the attackers ass… Chris Rock comes out after and jokes “Was that Will Smith?”
— Glock Topickz (@Glock_Topickz) May 4, 2022
Security guards chased and overpowered the attacker, later identified as Isaiah Lee. The 23-year-old man was armed with a replica handgun that contained a knife blade, the LAPD told CBS Los Angeles. He was arrested for assault with a deadly weapon and taken to a local hospital with “superficial injuries” for treatment. His bail was set at $30,000.
Chappelle, who was not injured, returned to the stage in the wake of the incident. “I grabbed the back of that ni**a’s head, his hair was spongy, absorbent,” he said while describing his attacker. “I’ve been doing this 35 years. I just stomped a ni**a backstage. Always wanted to do that.”
Busta Rhymes and Jamie Foxx also reportedly stepped in to defend Dave amid the melee. “Ni**a, I thought that was part of the show,” Foxx said before praising Chappelle as an “absolute genius.” “We gotta make sure we protect him at all times.”