Jay Ellis reveals full story behind ‘Insecure’ fan slapping him at the airport

Jay Ellis on Insecure (HBO)

Jay Ellis on Insecure (Photo: HBO)

As Jay Ellis tells it, the interactions he has had with Insecure fans since playing Issa Rae’s on-off boyfriend (and eventual husband) Martin Lawrence Walker through five seasons of the HBO hit generally fall in two categories: The vast majority will berate him for “what he did” to Issa (“that’s like 98%,” Ellis says), while the other 2% is “dudes like, ‘Ay, Lawrence Hive to death, bro!’”

And then there’s what happened to Ellis a year ago, when he was slapped by a random woman while in a gift shop.

Ellis revealed the incident in an early-2022 Twitter post, writing, “Good morning to everyone except for the lady that slapped me in the face at the airport because she got mad at Lawrence for something he did in season 3.”

In a new interview with Yahoo Entertainment promoting his upcoming romantic comedy Somebody I Used to Know, Ellis finally reveals the full story.

“I’m still processing it,” Ellis begins.

“I was in the airport and I was at this turnstile trying to get some Advil out of it. There was this woman standing behind it, and if I turned it around, [I thought] some of the stuff that was hanging on it was gonna hit her. So I said, ‘Excuse me.’

“She turns around, her eyes go wide, and she just reached back and full open-hand — like Rick James — just slapped me.”

The woman immediately apologized, and even offered to pay for the Top Gun: Maverick actor’s stuff at the counter.

“She did the Macaulay Culkin,” Ellis says, referencing the famed Home Alone moment where Kevin McAllister palms both cheeks and screams after feeling the burn of aftershave. “She said I reminded her of her ex-boyfriend, Lawrence triggered her.

“I feel sorry for that boyfriend. Because if she slapped me. If she slapped TV Lawrence, that poor boyfriend.”

Give Ellis credit, though, for keeping calm and not calling the cops.

“That’s what everybody says,” Ellis laughs.

Somebody I Used to Know premieres Feb. 10 on Prime Video.

Watch the trailer:

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