Jimmy Fallon will “never forget” the 2022 Oscars, not only because of the drama that unfolded when Will Smith attacked Chris Rock on stage but because he was “freaking out” over “the moment everyone’s talking about”: when his friend and in-house band The Roots’ frontman Questlove won his very first Oscar.
During Monday night’s episode of “The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon”, the TV host congratulated Questlove on taking home the award for Best Documentary for his film “Summer of Soul”. He also asked the 51-year-old musician how he happened to miss the entire debacle between Rock and Smith while he was physically in the room when it occurred.
Questlove explained how the incident took place when Rock was presenting the category in which he was nominated for so to deal with his anxiety, after being notified that Best Documentary was up next, he went into a state of transcendental meditation during the commercial break.
“I was just in my ‘mmmm.’ So, when I opened my eyes, I didn’t realize, like, ‘Why is everyone so quiet?'” he told Fallon of his moment of meditation, which he learned from Jerry Seinfeld.
“I literally was not present for that whole entire moment,” he added. “And as I’m walking to the stage [to accept the award], I’m kind of putting two and two together and I realize that that was a real moment, like, maybe three seconds before I spoke words.”
Questlove went on to explain how he thought Rock and Smith, who are “two very good friends” of his, were performing a rehearsed bit so he spent the moment remembering who he would have to thank if he won.
“So I was not present at all. I was just in a blank space.”