'Black Panther' Wins Best Hero, Celebrates Real-Life Hero James Shaw Jr. at MTV Movie & TV Awards

After being named Best Hero at the MTV Movie & TV Awards, Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman celebrated a real-life hero: James Shaw, Jr., the man who disarmed a gunman during a mass shooting at a Waffle House in Tennessee.

After thanking the fans, Boseman touched briefly on Black Panther itself before turning to the larger category of heroism -- and surprising even Shaw himself with the gesture.

“Ryan Coogler and I wanted to make sure that we made a movie that every fan could embrace,” Boseman said. “Receiving an award for playing a superhero is amazing, but it’s even greater to acknowledge the heroes that we have in real life. So I just want to acknowledge somebody who’s here today — James Shaw, Jr.”

After Shaw stood up, surprised by the attention, Boseman explained to the audience who Shaw was, and invited him onto the stage and presented him with the MTV Movie & TV Award trophy, telling him, “This is going to live at your house.”

In the time since the Waffle House shooting, Shaw has found himself elevated to a public figure, with a huge Twitter following, plenty of politicians and celebrities eager to praise his good deeds, and all of the baggage (positive and negative) that comes with celebrity.

The show was taped on Tuesday, so for the last few days, Boseman, Shaw, and others have had to keep secret the way it went down.

Black Panther was nominated in a field that also included Emilia Clarke (Daenerys Targaryen) from Game of Thrones; Gal Gadot (Diana Prince/Wonder Woman) from Wonder Woman; Grant Gustin (Barry Allen/The Flash) from The CW's The Flash; and Daisy Ridley (Rey) from Star Wars: The Last Jedi.

The MTV Movie & TV Awards (originally known just as the MTV Movie Awards) began in 1992, and added the "and TV" just last year. It is usually -- but obviously not always -- aired live.


Boseman's Black Panther is expected to return in Avengers 4, followed by a planned Black Panther sequel.

Avengers: Infinity War is in theaters now. It will be followed by Ant-Man and the Wasp on July 6, 2018, Captain Marvel on March 8, 2019, the fourth Avengers movie on May 3, 2019, the sequel to Spider-Man: Homecoming on July 5, 2019, and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 in 2020.