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Split Shocker: Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith Were Separated 6 Years Before Infamous 2022 Oscars Slap

jada pinkett smith will smith separated six years
Source: MEGA

Oct. 11 2023, Published 9:59 a.m. ET

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Jada Pinkett Smith and her husband Will Smith's marriage is far more complicated than what they've exposed to the public eye.

During a recent tell-all interview promoting her upcoming memoir Worthy, the 52-year-old shockingly confessed that she's been separated from the King Richard actor since 2016 — an entire six years before Will slapped Chris Rock at the 2022 Oscars in defense of his wife.

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jada pinkett smith will smith separated six years
Source: MEGA

Jada Pinkett Smith shockingly confessed she's been separated from Will Smith since 2016.

"I thought, 'This is a skit,'" Jada recalled to a news publication of the infamous awards show night, when she watched her husband storm the stage and opt for violence on live television. "I was like, 'There’s no way that Will hit him.' It wasn’t until Will started to walk back to his chair that I even realized it wasn’t a skit."

As soon as the two were finally alone, Jada remembers asking him: "Are you OK?"

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Though it seems the answer to his question was far more complicated for the both of them.

Following the slap heard around the world, the Girls Trip actress decided she was "going to be by his side, but also allow him to have to figure this out for himself."

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jada pinkett smith will smith separated six years
Source: MEGA

The duo tied the knot in 1997 and are still legally married on paper.

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As for their marriage, Jada admitted: "We’re still figuring it out."

"We’ve been doing some really heavy-duty work together. We just got deep love for each other and we are going to figure out what that looks like for us," she detailed.

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However, in an upcoming sit-down interview with TODAY's Hoda Kotb, Jada confirmed a more clear-cut picture of what her current relationship with the father of her two children — Jaden, 25, and Willow, 22 — entails.

In a preview of the NBC News primetime special, airing on Friday, October 13, the former Red Table Talk host revealed she and Will have been living "completely separate lives" since the pair's 2016 spit, which took place nearly 20 years after they tied the knot in 1997.

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jada pinkett smith will smith separated six years
Source: MEGA

Jada Pinkett Smith and Will Smith share son Jaden, 25, and daughter Willow, 22.

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Jada explained that while she and Will, 55, are still legally married on paper, they are no longer together romantically.

"It was not a divorce on paper," Hoda, 59, said to Jada for clarification, to which she replied "right."

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"But it was a divorce," Hoda reiterated, as Jada sternly confirmed: "Divorce."

When Kotb asked directly why the couple hadn't previously shared their relationship status, Pinkett Smith said it came down to "just not being ready yet ... Still trying to figure out between the two of us how to be in partnership ... In regards to, how do we present that to people? We hadn't figured that out."

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jada pinkett smith will smith separated six years
Source: MEGA

Jada Pinkett Smith considers Will Smith's son from a previous marriage, Trey, 30, her 'bonus son.'

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The mom-of-two, who considers Will's eldest child, Trey, 30, her "bonus son," noted there were multiple reasons for her marriage not working out.

"Why it fractured...that — that’s a lot of things ... By the time we got to 2016, we were just exhausted with trying. I think we were both kind of just still stuck in our fantasy of what we thought the other person should be," Jada expressed.

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While many other couples dealing with similar struggles would likely seek out an official divorce, Jada has never been able to follow through with such a definitive decision.

"I made a promise that there will never be a reason for us to get a divorce. We will work through ... whatever. I just haven’t been able to break that promise," Jada concluded.

Worthy hits the shelves on Tuesday, October 17.

People spoke to Jada about her reaction to Will's infamous Oscars slap, as well as the state of her marriage.

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