George Lopez Says Oscars Slap Is Like 'Deciding Which Parent' to Live with: 'I'm Staying with … Chris Rock'

George Lopez weighed in on the altercation between Will Smith and Chris Rock

George Lopez is standing with Chris Rock.

While attending the grand opening of the Immersive Frida Kahlo exhibit in support of Global Gift Foundation USA Wednesday evening, the actor and comedian, 60, expressed support for Rock, 57, after the Saturday Night Live alum was struck onstage by Will Smith for making a joke about Smith's wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, at the 2022 Oscars.

Noting that he is a "member of the Academy" — the organization behind the Oscars — Lopez told PEOPLE exclusively that weighing in on the incident is "like deciding which parent you want to live with" and Lopez is "staying with my dad and Chris Rock."

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Chris Rock and George Lopez
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Lopez, who has long been friends with Rock — and once described the comedian as "one of my heroes" — also said "He's got a lot of great friends."

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"I think what Wanda Sykes said on [The Ellen DeGeneres Show] was very, very powerful. They've been friends for a long time, and a comedian never really wants to show their vulnerability," he noted. "And I could tell that in Wanda, that it has affected her deeply that one of her best friends was struck like that."

Lopez also reflected on the current state of comedy, telling PEOPLE, "Well, nobody's been able to take a joke for the last five or six years."

George Lopez; Chris Rock; Will Smith
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"So, moving forward," he added, "I think that people will feel like they're able to stand up and [do what they want]. You come to enjoy a show, not to make a statement."

While presenting Best Documentary Feature inside Los Angeles' Dolby Theatre, Rock took a moment to crack a few jokes, including one about Pinkett's shaved head. The comedian compared Pinkett Smith's appearance to that of Demi Moore's look in G.I. Jane. Pinkett Smith, who recently opened up about living with alopecia, was captured visibly unamused by cameras, rolling her eyes from her seat. Seconds later, Smith walked onstage and approached Rock, smacking him in front of the audience and millions watching the telecast at home.

Back at his table, Smith shouted to a stunned Rock: "Keep my wife's name out of your f-----g mouth." Smith remained seated with his wife at his table for the rest of the night. Rock declined to press charges.

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When Smith won Best Actor later in the ceremony moments later, he apologized to the Academy and his fellow nominees, but did not mention Rock. In his tearful speech, he spoke about acting out of love and protection, saying, "Love makes you do crazy things."

RELATED VIDEO: Chris Rock Said He Let People 'Walk All Over' Him 2 Months Before Will Smith Smacked Him at Oscars

On Monday, Smith publicly apologized to Rock in a statement shared on Instagram, saying, in part, "I was out of line and I was wrong. I am embarrassed and my actions were not indicative of the man I want to be. There is no place for violence in a world of love and kindness."

That same day, the Academy said in a statement, "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."

The Academy then said days later that Smith was actually asked to leave after the incident but "refused." The organization added: "We also recognize we could have handled the situation differently."

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