CHRIS Rock tackled the Oscars diversity race row head on while opening this year’s ceremony, branding Hollywood racist.
The outrageous comedian, 51, made the audience of A-listers cringe and cackle as he admitted he considered boycotting the ceremony.
He joked: “I’m here at the Academy Awards, otherwise known as the White People’s Choice Awards.
“If they nominated hosts I wouldn’t even get this job. You’d be seeing Neil Patrick Harris right now.
“People are like, ‘Chris you should boycott, you should quit’. How come it’s only unemployed people who tell you to quit something?
“I thought about quitting, but I realise they’re gonna have the Oscars anyway and the last thing I need is to lose another job to Kevin Hart.”
“The real question everyone wants to know is, ‘Is Hollywood racist?’ You gotta go at that at the right way. Is it burning cross racist? it’s a different type of racist.
“You’re damn right Hollywood’s racist, but it’s the racist we’ve become accustomed to.
“Things are changing. We got a black Rocky this year and that’s an unbelievable statement because Rocky takes place in a world where white athletes are as good as black athletes.
“So Rocky’s a science fiction movie. There are things that happen in Star Wars that are more believable than Rocky.”
Chris went on to lash out at Jada Pinkett Smith for boycotting the Oscars because of the diversity row.
He said: “Jada went mad, Jada said she’s not coming. Jada boycotting the Oscars is like me boycotting Rihanna’s panties – I wasn’t invited.
“Jada’s mad, her man, Will is not nominated. It’s not fair…what’s not fair is that Will was paid $20million for Wild Wild West.”
He also suggested that the furore over the Oscars suggests that the black community has it better than ever.
Chris said: “Why are we protesting this Oscars? It’s the 88th Academy Awards, which means this whole no black nominees thing has happened at least 71 other times.
“Black people did not protest. Why? Because we had real things to protest at the time.
“We were too busy being raped and lynched to care about who won Best Cinematographer.
“When your grandmother’s swinging from a tree, it’s really hard to care about Best Documentary – Foreign Short.”
Chris later brought out Clueless actress Stacey Dash, who recently questioned the need for Black History Month and the BET Awards, as the new director of the Academy’s ‘minority outreach programme’.
Chris went on to joke that the Oscars should have “black categories” and also hit out at complaints of sexism towards the female stars.
He said: “Another big thing tonight is you’re not allowed to ask women what they’re wearing anymore.
“They ask the men more because every man is wearing the same outfits.
“If George Clooney showed up with a lime green tux on and a swan coming out his a**, someone would go, ‘What you wearing, George?'”
Ride Along 2 star Kevin was more serious when he came to present an award.
He said: “I’m a positive guy. I feed off of positive energy, and positive overall beasts negative.
“That being said, I want to take a moment to applaud all my actors of colour who didn’t get nominated tonight. Tonight shouldn’t determine the arts and passion you put into your craft.
“These problems of today will soon be problems of old. Goddamit, congratulations on an amazing year.
He joked: “I also wanna say I only came today because I thought I would get a seat in front the row, and I didn’t.”
Chris made sure to keep the event light hearted too, badgering the millionaire guests into buying girl scout cookies from his daughters.