What Does Richard Williams Really Think About The Slap Heard Around The World?

Nearly everyone has weighed in on Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Academy Awards. But what does the real "King Richard," Richard Williams, think about the slap heard around the world? After Smith's shocking actions, the New York Post reported that Serena Williams was stunned by the incident. In an Instagram Story, the tennis legend said, "I just sat down, because I was like, I gotta put that drink down." The shock surrounding Smith's actions continued as the actor invoked Richard Williams, Venus and Serena's father, in his Oscar acceptance speech. "Richard Williams was a fierce defender of his family," Smith said as he accepted his award. "In this time in my life, I am overwhelmed by what God is calling on me to do and be in this world."

But the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences is not taking Smith's outburst at the Oscars lightly. According to The Hollywood Reporter, the Academy issued an official statement on March 28, saying, "The Academy condemns the actions of Mr. Smith at last night's show. We have officially started a formal review around the incident and will explore further action and consequences in accordance with our Bylaws, Standards of Conduct and California law." And many who have been waiting to hear from the real "King Richard" got what they wanted late on the same day.

The real King Richard speaks out about Will Smith's Oscars altercation

Richard Williams has weighed in on Will Smith slapping Chris Rock at the Oscars. The father of Venus and Serena Williams, the real "King Richard," said he was confused by Smith's actions during the Academy Awards. "We don't know all the details of what happened," Williams told NBC News. "But we don't condone anyone hitting anyone else unless it's in self-defense." The 80-year-old spoke to NBC News through his son, Chavoita LeSane. Williams has spoken through his 48-year-old son since he had a stroke. LeSane wrapped up the comments to NBC News by adding, "Williams was quite surprised" at Smith's actions.

Smith referenced Williams, who he portrayed in "King Richard," in his acceptance speech after winning the Oscar for Best Actor in a Leading Role. The former "Fresh Prince" actor Smith called Williams "a fierce defender of his family." In his acceptance speech, Smith said, "Art imitates life. I look like the crazy father, just like they said about Richard Williams." But, of course, viewers chose to focus instead on the fact that Smith's actions took away from the pride and joy the entire Williams family should've been basking in that night. "Will Smith didn't just steal from his own moment tonight," one viewer tweeted. "He stole from Venus Williams, Serena Williams, Richard Williams and everyone else involved with 'King Richard.' Shame."