“Bad Boys 4” incorporates humor around the recent Will Smith Oscars incident and impresses audiences with a staggering $105 million global opening weekend.

Published by Cel Manero from Global One Media, Inc.

“Bad Boys: Ride or Die” caused a stir at the box office, marking a significant turn for the summer movie season after a relatively sluggish start. Surpassing revenue expectations, the film amassed $104 million globally, with $48.6 million generated from international screenings. This figure notably outshines the earnings of “Furiosa: A Mad Max Story” over Memorial Day weekend by 58%, as reported by Deadline.

The movie, the fourth installment in the Will Smith and Martin Lawrence-led series, was distributed by Sony Pictures, helmed by producers Jerry Bruckheimer, and directed by Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah.

“Ride or Die” marks Will Smith’s return to the big screen following the widely publicized slapping incident at the 2022 Oscars, which cast a shadow over his reputation in Hollywood. Despite the controversy, production for the film continued as planned, with a hefty $100 million budget already allocated.

Ahead of the film’s release, it was revealed that “Ride or Die” would directly address the Oscars controversy. In one scene, Will Smith’s character, Mike Lowrey, is repeatedly slapped by Martin Lawrence’s character, Marcus Burnett, as Lowrey experiences a panic attack, with Burnett attempting to jolt him out of it.

Directors Arbi and Fallah confirmed the deliberate inclusion of the slapping scene. “Well, I think you know, if you watch the movie, you see that there are some parallels between what’s happening in the movie and real life,” they explained in an interview with UNILAD. “You know, there’s — it’s almost like a meta experience that Will in the character of Mike Lowrey goes through with some themes.”

“So obviously, it had something, there is a connection between real life and the story of the movie in the movie itself,” the pair elaborated.

Critics also found merit in the inclusion of the scene. Owen Gleiberman from Variety referred to the slapping sequence as a “direct reference” to the Oscars incident, characterizing it as “a kind of pop exorcism.”

Gleiberman commented, “It’s ‘punishing’ Smith, making cruel fun of his transgression, and just maybe, in the process, allowing him to crawl out from under the image of it.”

In a similar vein, Johnny Oleksinski from the New York Post remarked, “The best part of ‘Bad Boys: Ride or Die’ arrives near the end of the film when Martin Lawrence slaps Will Smith in the face and yells ‘bad boy!’ What a shame that it’s fake.”

Smith faced a ten-year ban from the Oscars following his onstage altercation with host Chris Rock, where he stormed onto the stage and slapped Rock for a joke about his wife, Jada Pinkett Smith.