The 17-year-old actress was shocked by the news on Sunday that her Jessie co-star, Boyce, had died. While speaking with ET at the Lion King premiere in Los Angeles on Tuesday, she said she and the Disney Channel star were as close as brother and sister.
"He was like a brother to me, so it's very sad," Jackson said, tearing up. "And he was just a happy person, it was very unfortunate. But we're going to continue his legacy, and I know he would be proud of us."
"Yeah, it's really sad," Jackson emotionally added.
Boyce's family confirmed his death in a statement to ET on Sunday. "It is with a profoundly heavy heart that we report that this morning we lost Cameron," a spokesperson for the family said. "He passed away in his sleep due to a seizure which was a result of an ongoing medical condition for which he was being treated. The world is now undoubtedly without one of its brightest lights, but his spirit will live on through the kindness and compassion of all who knew and loved him."
The actor was just 20 years old, but left a lasting legacy at Disney Channel. Boyce had starred in many projects at the network, starting in 2011, with guest appearances on Good Luck Charlie and Shake It Up and a starring role on Jessie. He also appeared on Austin & Ally and Liv and Maddie, before earning his role as Carlos, the son of Cruella de Vil, in Disney Channel's hit 2015 movie, Descendants. He reprised his role as Carlos in Descendants 2 in 2017, and will star in Descendants 3, set to debut on Disney Channel next month. It's unclear if the movie will still premiere as scheduled.
"From a young age, Cameron Boyce dreamed of sharing his extraordinary artistic talents with the world. As a young man, he was fueled by a strong desire to make a difference in peoples' lives through his humanitarian work. He was an incredibly talented performer, a remarkably caring and thoughtful person and, above all else, he was a loving and dedicated son, brother, grandson and friend," a Disney Channel spokesperson told ET in a statement on Sunday.
"We offer our deepest condolences to his family, castmates and colleagues and join his many millions of fans in grieving his untimely passing. He will be dearly missed," the statement concluded.
A spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County Medical Examiner-Coroner told ET that an autopsy was performed on Boyce on Monday and that the cause of death was deferred pending further investigation.