Belfast Telegraph

Will Smith spoke to Prince on eve of his shock death

President Barack Obama joins fans around the world in mourning the icon's loss.

Will Smith and his wife Jada were "stunned" to hear of Prince's passing after speaking to the music icon on Wednesday night (20Apr16).

The news of the legendary artist's death emerged on Thursday (21Apr16), and sheriff's officials in Minnesota have since revealed the 1999 singer was found unresponsive in an elevator at his Paisley Park compound.

Paramedics were called to the property and performed CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation), but the 57-year-old, who was briefly hospitalised for the flu last week (ends15Apr16), was subsequently pronounced dead.

Movie star Will has become the latest celebrity friend to share his heartbreak online, revealing the loss was all the more shocking as he had just touched base with Prince hours before his death.

"I am stunned and heartbroken," he wrote in a post on "I just spoke with him last night. Today, Jada & I mourn with all of you the loss of a beautiful poet, a true inspiration, and one of the most magnificent artists to ever grace this earth."

His actress wife, Jada Pinkett Smith, also shared a touching tribute on the social networking site.

"Prince was one of the first artists to put me on game in regard to the industry (sic)," she recalled. "He was not only a genius artist, he was kind, funny, beautifully eccentric, curious, imaginative, magical, spiritual, rebellious and extremely intelligent. He showed me early the power of living one's life by one's own rules and no one else's. There are really no words to express what we have all lost today."

Meanwhile, U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle have issued an official statement celebrating Prince's legacy.

The press release reads: "Today, the world lost a creative icon. Michelle and I join millions of fans from around the world in mourning the sudden death of Prince. Few artists have influenced the sound and trajectory of popular music more distinctly, or touched quite so many people with their talent. As one of the most gifted and prolific musicians of our time, Prince did it all. Funk. R&B. Rock and roll. He was a virtuoso instrumentalist, a brilliant bandleader, and an electrifying performer.

"'A strong spirit transcends rules', Prince once said - and nobody's spirit was stronger, bolder, or more creative. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family, his band, and all who loved him."

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