For the last six years, the world got to see actor Chadwick Boseman grace the big screen in several important and groundbreaking roles. At 26 years old, Boseman began a career in Hollywood.
According to his IMBd page, one of his first roles was a small one in All My Children in 2003 and from there the actor never stopped. From roles on Law & Order and ER, Boseman did it all. Then 10 years later came his breakout role as Jackie Robinson in the movie 43.
From there Boseman portrayed even more historical figures like James Brown in Get On Up and Thurgood Marshall in Marshall. But perhaps his most important role was the role he played in the world of superheroes. In 2018, Marvel shared its first-ever Black superhero with the world in the blockbuster hit Black Panther. Boseman was the Black Panther/ King T’Challa.
Sadly, following a slew of other movies and an incredible 20-plus year career, it was reported on August 28 that Boseman passed away after battling colon cancer, secretly, for the last six years. According to the Associated Press, the actor died at his home with his wife and family by his side.
Boseman and his wife, Taylor Simone Ledward, did not yet have any children. The couple married in a secret ceremony some time ago.
Now his celebrity friends and other Hollywood giants are mourning the loss of Chadwick Boseman. Here are some of their tributes:
While Boseman was in undergrad at Howard University, his mentor was none other than actress Phylicia Rashad. It was while she was a mentor to students at Howard that she received a call one year explaining that a handful of them were accepted into “the British American Drama Academy’s Midsummer program, but would not be attending because they couldn’t afford it,” CNN reports.
As Rashad explained during a tribute for Boseman, “I made a phone call to a friend of mine, and he called me back and we talked about it for about five minutes, and he said, ‘Okay, I got this money.” That friend was Denzel Washington, someone Boseman has been compared to since the start of his career.
And it would be an act of kindness that Boseman would never forget. While accepting the American Film Institute’s Lifetime Achievement Award, the actor said there would be now Black Panther if it wasn’t for Washington. “As fate would have it, I was one of the students that he paid for. Imagine receiving the letter that your tuition for that summer was paid for and that your benefactor was none other than the dopest actor on the planet. […] There is no Black Panther without Denzel Washington. And not just because of me, but my whole cast — that generation — stands on your shoulders.”
Now, Washington is paying tribute to Boseman. “He was a gentle soul and a brilliant artist, who will stay with us for eternity through his iconic performances over his short yet illustrious career,” the legend said in his statement. “God bless Chadwick Boseman.”
“My prayers go out to Chadwick’s family and loved ones. The world will miss his tremendous talent. God rest his soul.”
“Today is beyond devastating to comprehend. Just shock and pain…I was in awe of Chadwick, as an actor, in his commitment to the work and as a human. I looked up to him,” Stan wrote. “The way he carried himself, how thoughtful and mindful he was, how generous…he elevated everyone around him. None of it makes sense to me. There was so much more coming from this man. It’s such a loss. Such a shame.”
In a lengthy post, Gurira wrote, in part, “How do you honor a king? Reeling from the loss of my colleague, my friend, my brother. Struggling for words. Nothing feels adequate. I always marveled at how special Chadwick was. Such a pure-hearted, profoundly generous, regal, fun guy. My entire job as Okoye was to respect and protect a king. Honor his leadership. Chadwick made that job profoundly easy. He was the epitome of kindness, elegance, diligence, and grace. On many an occasion, I would think how thankful I was that he was the leading man I was working closely with. A true class act.”
“Gonna miss you mate. Absolutely heartbreaking. One of the kindest most genuine people I’ve met. Sending love and support to all the family xo RIP.”
Marvel issued several tributes on Instagram while remembering “their king.”
“Our hearts are broken and our thoughts are with Chadwick Boseman’s family. Your legacy will live on forever. Rest In Peace.”
“All I have to say is the tragedies amassing this year have only been made more profound by the loss of Chadwick Boseman. What a man, and what an immense talent,” Ruffalo wrote. “Brother, you were one of the all-time greats and your greatness was only beginning. Lord, love ya. Rest in power, King.”
I’m absolutely devastated. This is beyond heartbreaking. Chadwick was special. A true original. He was a deeply committed and constantly curious artist. Few performers have such power and versatility. He had so much amazing work still left to create. I’m endlessly grateful for our friendship. My thoughts and prayers are with his family. Rest in power, King.
And Chadwick’s fans did the same thing.
“After Chadwick passed, Kian was pretty devastated because Black Panther was his favorite superhero,” King Westbrook told Popsugar. “He said he wanted to find a way to honor him by making a memorial similar to the one Iron Man received when he died in the movie. His mom helped get the materials and took the picture, and this helped give Kian some peace.”
Our thoughts and prayer are with Boseman’s family and friends and the world who adored him during this extremely difficult time.
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