Stars on the defensive: When red carpet appearances go wrong

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When a reporter’s embrace of megastar Will Smith turned overly amorous as the actor worked the red carpet last week to promote his new movie, ‘Men in Black III’, Smith unleashed the slap that was heard around the world. Smith, a consummate red-carpet pro, quickly regained his composure after Vitalii Sediuk’s attempt to kiss him. This isn’t the first time Sediuk, a Ukrainian TV personality, has tried to gain notoriety for himself at a celebrity’s expense. He presented Madonna with hydrangeas at the Venice Film Festival. The pop icon accepted them but said to someone off-camera: “I absolutely loathe hydrangeas. He obviously doesn’t know that.” Unfortunately, the microphone was open and the video of her comments went viral. Sediuk’s antics aren’t unique. Remember when Tom Cruise was hit in the face by a stream of water from a joke microphone during the London premiere for the film ‘War of the Worlds’? Cruise was incensed, telling the prankster, “That’s incredibly rude. I am here giving you an interview and you do something nasty. You are a jerk.” Sacha Baron Cohen threw the “ashes” of deceased North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il on ‘American Idol’ host Ryan Seacrest. Critics say Will Smith was justified in defending himself. It’s not professional to invade anybody’s personal space, especially someone that’s a subject that you’re interviewing, they said.