Will Smith shared a short but poignant tribute to Muhammad Ali on Saturday, just hours after the legendary boxer died.
As Gossip Cop has reported, Ali passed away on Friday night of complications from Parkinson’s Disease. He was 74. Since the sad news broke, there’s been an outpouring of mourning among celebrities and sports stars. And Smith was one of the lucky people to share a personal connection with the famed athlete.
The actor starred as Ali in the critically-acclaimed 2001 biopic, Ali. Smith was nominated for an Oscar and a Golden Globe for his portrayal of the fighter during the 10 years between 1964 and 1974. During that time, Ali faced off with Sunny Liston, Joe Frazier, and George Foreman.
Smith trained extensively for the role, and now on Facebook, he shared an old photo of himself in the boxing ring with Ali. He wrote, “You shook up the World! My Mentor & My Friend. You changed my Life. Rest in Peace.” Smith also included the picture above, showing himself with Ali at a 2003 event celebrating the GOAT – Greatest Of All Time, A Tribute to Muhammad Ali book.
Ali’s funeral will be held next Friday in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. It is not known if Smith plans to attend.