The writers of SNL really lucked out this week and had excellent source material for their first night back since March 12.
The witty series mixed two trending topics in one silly sketch. Some Oscar viewers might have missed it, but in addition to the “slap heard ‘round the world” Amy Schumer received some backlash for “disrespecting” Academy Award nominee Kirsten Dunst by referring to her as a “seat filler” in a scripted bit during the Academy Awards ceremony.
“Here’s a seat filler,” Schumer told the camera, while explaining the concept to viewers as she pulled Dunst out of her seat. “Honey, do you want to go to the bathroom?” The comedian then sat down in Dunst’s place and began a conversation with Jesse Plemons. Both Plemons and Dunst were nominated for Oscars for their performances in Power of the Dog. “Jesse, I loved you in Power of the Dog,” Schumer said.
Plemons replied, “You know, that was my wife, Amy.”
Schumer, without missing a beat, joked, “You’re married to that seat filler?”
When Plemons nodded, she replied, “Oh, that’s weird.”
The Internet is not pleased.
After the internet crucified Schumer for the joke, she felt she needed to address the situation and explain in her Instagram story that the bit was scripted and Dunst was totally in on the joke.
SNL decided to poke fun at the slap incident by showing it from the perspective of seat fillers. Chris Redd played the part of Will Smith, who was happily chatting it up with a seat filler (Jerrod Carmichael) who tells Smith that he’s his hero and that his ring tone is even set to Gettin’ Jiggy Wit.
The star-struck seat filler asked for a selfie with the Academy Award-winning actor. Just as they were about to take the picture, the audience hears the punchline of Chris Rock’s infamous jab at Jada Pinkett Smith and Redd (as Smith) politely excuses himself to walk up to the stage and out of the frame. We, the audience, hear the sound of a loud “SLAP” and we see the seat filler react, completely horrified. When Smith (Redd) returns, the seat filler is terrified and uncomfortable as Smith tries to continue smalltalk.
After another seat filler, played by Kyle Mooney joins them and the three carry on an increasingly uncomfortable conversation, Gettin’ Jiggy Wit It starts playing, and Redd’s Smith jumps up to dance, recreating the real Will Smith’s dance moves which were captured on video at an Oscar party.
“Everything’s normal y’all!,” Smith (Redd) yells.
The sketch can be seen here on SNL’s official Twitter profile:
In the week following the incident, Will Smith apologized, The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences announced that “disciplinary proceedings” have begun against Will Smith, and ultimately, Will Smith resigned from the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences.
It might be “too soon,” but it was a great way to address both incidents in a comical way.