‘You Could See In His Face That He Made a Mistake’: Leslie Jones Says Prince Thought She Was Chris Rock When He Came to SNL

In Leslie Jones’ new memoir, she recalls when one of her idols accidentally called her Chris Rock

In the book, “Leslie F*cking Jones,” the energetic comedienne talks about her life, stand-up career and her time working on the NBC show “Saturday Night Live.” Jones spent five years as a cast member from 2014-2019.  

While working at Studio 8H in Rockefeller Plaza, Jones was present for some wild guests like NBA legend Charles Barkley, international superstar Drake, and even a pre-presidential Donald Trump. For Jones, one of her most memorable acts to come to the late-night comedy show was the late icon Prince

Leslie Jones says Prince mistook her for Chris Rock on the set of SNL.
Leslie Jones says Prince mistook her for Chris Rock on the set of “SNL.” (Photo: @lesdogggg/Instagram)

Jones shares that she will never forget meeting Prince in 2014 when he was a musical guest on a November show episode. Chris Rock was the host for that episode, and Jones said that led to a big mix-up that happened when she finally met the “Purple Rain” singer.

The “Coming 2 America” star wrote, “At one point, he saw me on the side of the stage, and because the room was dark, he thought I was Chris Rock.”

Jones continued, “I know that because he called me Chris Rock.”

Jones went into more detail about the interaction on a September 2021 episode of “The Kelly Clarkson Show.” She told Clarkson that she loved Prince, and when he was coming off the stage she was backstage smiling and yelling his name. 

Jones said, “So he comes off the stage, and starts heading towards me. And it’s like he’s coming towards me! I’m like, ‘Prince is headed towards me. Prince is headed towards me. Prince is headed towards me.’ ”  

She continued, “So he gets right here, and you could see in his face that he made a mistake. But he’s very sweet so he kept coming and he grabs my hand, and I said ‘You thought I was Chris Rock, didn’t you?’ ” 

Jones says the late great artist nodded his head and said, “Yes, I did. Yes, I did.” 

Prince may have seen Jones and Chris Rock together before the mix-up because the two comedians go way back. Jones credits the “Head of State” actor with helping her to get a part on “SNL.” Because of their close connection, Jones let it be known how Will Smith’s slap actually affected Rock. 

In an interview with People, Jones said that it really affected her friend and that it made her “so f—–g mad on so many levels.” 

She also revealed that it ended up causing the former “SNL” cast member to go to therapy. “People need to understand, his daughters, his parents, saw that,” Jones said. “He had to go to counseling with his daughters.” 

Readers questioned why Jones was putting her friend’s business out to the world. 

“It’s odd how Leslie Jones is using Chris Rock trauma to promote her book??? Like why??” 

“She’s not making things any better by revealing this to the public lol.” 

“Isn’t HIPAA a thing? Why is Leslie Jones talking about this?”  

Jones said that Smith should not have accepted the Oscar after the incident. She said the “Fresh Prince” star should have said, “‘I shouldn’t have did that. Bring Chris out. I cannot accept the Oscar right now because that was f—ing wrong.'” 

She commended her friend for how he handled the situation. Jones said, “Instead of us going crazy we f—–g go talk about it on the f—–g stage.” Rock did just that with his Netflix comedy special “Selective Outrage.” Rock finally gave his thoughts on the entire Will and Jada ordeal in the special, which dropped this March.

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