Chadwick Boseman’s death from colon cancer at 43 shocks fans and Hollywood, Oprah offers a kind remembrance, as well as insight about his cultural impact
Social Media was set ablaze last night with sobering news of the passing of The Black Panther star, Chadwick Boseman’s premature death at 43 to colon cancer. The actors’ influence on Black culture as well as Hollywood was easily discernible as Twitter, Instagram, Variety, The Hollywood Reporter and People Magazine raced to post praises of his work.
Oprah penned a particularly moving tribute to Boseman remarking,
“What a gentle gifted SOUL. Showing us all that Greatness in between surgeries and chemo. The courage, the strength, the Power it takes to do that. This is what Dignity looks like.”
Winfrey herself was a huge fan of the actors’ work in the Blockbuster hit, The Black Panther. She co-hosted, A night in Wakanda, for Oscar voters in the year the film was nominated for a bevy of awards. She spoke ebulliently that night and said in part,
“…Because everybody recognized that something bigger than a movie was happening up on that screen. We all knew..those of us who have come from the culture and the history.. how lit it was. It just gave us life! It gave us life! But it was so affirming for everyone who saw it because you knew that it was bigger than this moment..it was a cultural happening and just to be in the theater was to be a part of all of that.”
She captured the enormity of what we know now, as well as its importance to Black children,
“A phenomenon in every way, on every level. Makes me tear up to think that little black children will grow up with Wakanda forever. It’s game-changing, it’s pride-making, it’s dazzling, it’s phenomenal.”
For his part, it seems Boseman knew exactly what he was getting into. His representatives noted upon his passing,
“It was the honor of his career to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther.”
His team released a statement saying, “A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all and brought you many of the films you have come to love so much. From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, and several more, all were filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy.”
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