Ricky Gervais has joined the conversation revolving around Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars on Sunday night.
Smith took offence at Rock after the host made a joke about his wife’s alopecia.
Jada Pinkett Smith has previously gone public about her hair condition after she shaved her head to cover up the symptoms.
At the award ceremony Rock said ‘Jada, can’t wait for GI Jane 2’ referencing Demi Moore’s character in the first movie with a bald head.
Pinkett Smith rolled her eyes at the comment, but her husband Will stormed the stage and slapped the host before returning to his shout shouting ‘Keep my wife’s name out of your fucking mouth,’ at Rock.
The incident sparked a string of comments on social media, including input from Gervais who retweeted a clip from the second season of The Office in which his character David Brent makes a joke about alopecia.
In the scene Brent buys three pints in a pub.
‘Welcome to Alcoholics Anonymous!’ Brent says.
‘No – purely social. I know someone who is an alcoholic and it is no laughing matter – particularly for his wife. And she’s got alopecia. So… not a happy home life.’
The resurfacing of Brent’s joke divided opinion from those who found it amusing and those who found the timing of Gervais’ tweet in poor taste.
One person tweeted: ‘I’ve been waiting all day for your reply and as always, nailed it.’
But another reply criticised the comedian for joking about the condition. ‘It’s one thing to make fun of the disease (or a fictional character) but another to pick on one specific real-life person who has the disease,’ they stated.
‘Especially if she’s sitting in the audience. Does no one else see the issue or am I just too sensitive?’
Ricky Gervais has hosted the Golden Globes five times – but has never hosted the Oscars.
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