On Friday, the world got the tragic news that actor Chadwick Boseman had died after a four-year battle with colon cancer at the age of 43. During his career, Boseman brought to life a number of memorable characters including those of historical figures, such as his role as Jackie Robinson in 42 and Thurgood Marshall in Marshall. For many fans, however, Boseman was perhaps best known for his role as the titular hero in Marvel's Black Panther.
Released in 2018, Black Panther was a massive hit, breaking box office records and earning numerous awards and nominations, including a nomination for Best Picture. In the wake of Boseman's passing, those who worked with the actor on Black Panther are paying tribute to him. From reflecting on the content of Boseman's character to sharing memories of their time with him, many of the stars of the Marvel film have honored Boseman, remembering the man who was a hero to many.
Boseman died on Friday at the age of 43 following a four-year battle with colon cancer. The actor, who also starred in films such as 42, Marshall, Da 5 Bloods, and the upcoming Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, had never publicly spoken about his illness. Marvel Studios, ABC Entertainment, and ABC News will air a special honoring the late actor on Sunday night following the airing of Black Panther, commercial free, on ABC at 8 p.m. ET.
Read on for how the cast of Black Panther is paying tribute to Boseman.
Angela Bassett played Ramonda, the Queen Mother of Wakanda in the film and in her tribute to Boseman noted that it was meant for her and the actor to be family, sharing that when Boseman was a student at Howard University he had been the student assigned to escort her when she was awarded an honorary degree. Bassett remembered Boseman as "a beautiful spirit, a consummate artist, a soulful brother."
prevnextView this post on Instagram
“It was meant to be for Chadwick and me to be connected, for us to be family. But what many don’t know is our story began long before his historic turn as Black Panther. During the premiere party for Black Panther, Chadwick reminded me of something. He whispered that when I received my honorary degree from Howard University, his alma mater, he was the student assigned to escort me that day. And here we were, years later as friends and colleagues, enjoying the most glorious night ever! We’d spent weeks prepping, working, sitting next to each other every morning in makeup chairs, preparing for the day together as mother and son. I am honored that we enjoyed that full circle experience. This young man’s dedication was awe-inspiring, his smile contagious, his talent unreal. So I pay tribute to a beautiful spirit, a consummate artist, a soulful brother...”thou aren’t not dead but flown afar...”. All you possessed, Chadwick, you freely gave. Rest now, sweet prince.” #WakandaForever
Sterling K. Brown
Sterling K. Brown, who played N'Jobu, Killmonger's father and T'Challa's uncle in the film, wrote that he didn't have words for the loss of Boseman and thanked the actor for his friendship.
I don’t have words. Rest In Peace, Bruh. Thank you for all you did while you were here. Thank you for being a friend. You are loved. You will be missed. 🤜🏿🤛🏿 https://t.co/8rK4dWmorq— Sterling K Brown (@SterlingKBrown) August 29, 2020
Letitia Wright, who played T'Challa's sister Shuri in the film, shared a sentiment that many fans and friends of Boseman's felt at the news of his passing.
this hurts. really hurts— Letitia Wright (@letitiawright) August 30, 2020
Andy Serkis played Ulysses Klaue in the film and wrote in his tribute how it's "inconceivable" to think that Boseman was no longer in the world.prevnext
Everett K. Ross actor Martin Freeman told Rolling Stone he was shocked by Boseman's death and noted that the actor was a thoughtful and watchful person completely committed to his work.
"I'm absolutely shocked. Chadwick was thoughtful, watchful, and totally committed in his work. A boyish grin and a contagious laugh. To still do what he did, when he must have been going through some terrible physical and emotional pain, is testament to the man. My heartfelt condolences to his family and those he loved. Rest in Peace, brother."prevnext
Danai Gurira, who played Okoye in the film, shared not only a heartfelt tribute to Boseman that praised him as "pure hearted, profoundly generous, regal" but also sweet photos, one of she and Boseman hugging and one of their chairs on the set of Black Panther.prevnext
In addition to the cast of Black Panther, the film's director Ryan Coogler also issued a statement in tribute to Boseman, writing about how "inheriting" the casting of Boseman as T'Challa from the Russo Brothers -- who had directed the actor in Captain America: Civil War -- was something he would be forever grateful for. He detailed how seeing the actor's performance as T'Challa in an unfinished cut of that film cemented for him that he wanted to make Black Panther.0comments
"I was deciding whether or not directing 'Black Panther' was the right choice for me. I'll never forget, sitting in an editorial suite on the Disney Lot and watching his scenes," Coogler wrote. "His first with Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, then, with the South African cinema titan, John Kani as T'Challa's father, King T'Chaka. It was at that moment I knew I wanted to make this movie."
You can read the full statement here.prev