Will Smith and Jada Pinkett-Smith’s marriage was in turmoil long before he slapped Chris Rock in her defense at the 2022 Oscars. In an explosive new interview, published on October 11, Jada confirmed that she and her husband were separated for six years before the incident even happened.

“We’re still figuring it out,” Jada, 52, told People. “We’ve been doing some really heavy-duty work together. We just got deep love for each other and are going to figure out what that looks like for us.”

Jada and Will tied the knot on December 31, 1997, and have children, Jaden Smith, 25, and Willow Smith, 22. Jada is also the stepmother of Will’s son, Trey Smith, 30, from his marriage to Sheree Zampino.

The stars have been open about the struggles in their relationship in the past. Notably, Jada previously admitted to having an “entanglement” with another man, August Alsina, while married to Will. During a July 2020 Red Table Talk episode, Jada explained that her relationship with August occurred in 2016 while she and Will were going through a “difficult” time. She also confirmed that she and her husband were separated during that period, but said that they subsequently decided to work on things. Based on her latest confession, though, it appears that the separation never officially ended.

Jada Pinkett-Smith Confirms She and Will Have Been Separated For 7 Years as She Talks Oscars Slap
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In her People interview, Jada also spoke publicly about Will slapping Chris at the Academy Awards for the first time. “I thought, ‘This is a skit,’” she admitted. “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 realized it wasn’t even a skit.” The slap came after Chris made a jab at Jada’s expense, joking that she should star in G.I. Jane 2 because of her shaved head. Jada has been open about her struggle with alopecia, which causes hair loss.

Jada will expand further on the infamous slap in her new book, Worthy, which will be released on October 17. In an excerpt of the book, obtained by People, Jada admitted to having a “premonition” that caused her stomach to “clench” right before Chris took the stage at the Oscars. “He had been known to take swipes at me,” she explained.

Jada Pinkett-Smith Confirms She and Will Have Been Separated For 7 Years as She Talks Oscars Slap
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The actress also said that her frustration was not with Chris making fun of her for having alopecia. Rather, she felt for those who struggle with the condition more than she does. “I was frustrated that the majority of folks can’t seem to understand how devastating alopecia can be,” she revealed.