In an interview with ABC6 Philadelphia, Caroline Smith shared how the family watched and celebrated Oscars night at home as her son won Best Actor for his role in King Richard.
When she saw her son slap comedian Chris Rock in the face on television, she was shocked and that it was the first time she saw her son “go off” like that to anyone.
“He is a very even people person. And that’s the first time I’ve ever seen him go off. The first time in his lifetime. I’ve never seen him do that. He would talk if something’s going on, to take off, I’ve never seen it…
“He’s a people person and he has never tried to ‘I’m going to do this to hurt you’ just because he’s never been like that.”
She also shared how the entire family dressed up like they were attending the event in Los Angeles, cheered when her son won the award, and how emotional she and the family felt when he dedicated parts of his acceptance speech to her.
“I felt just like I screamed, that’s what I’ve felt. It was a long time coming it was well deserving…
“…My buttons popped out. I was just pleased by my baby. I know how he works, how hard he works. And he never half-steps”.
Since the incident, Smith has apologized for his actions, admitting that he was out of line. Multiple celebrities, such as OJ Simpson, Richard Williams, and Zoë Kravitz, have condemned Smith for his actions.