Star of “Black Panther” dies after four-year battle with cancer
According to a statement posted on his Twitter account, Chadwick Boseman, the star of Black Panther, has died after battling colon cancer for four years. He was 43 years old.
“It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman,” the statement reads. “It was the honor of his life to bring King T’Challa to life in Black Panther.” (See full statement below.)
Boseman’s cinematic resume was extensive. He worked on a number of films and TV shows over the last two decades– portraying the iconic baseball player Jackie Robinson in 42, James Brown in Get on Up, and Stormin’ Norman in Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods, to name a few– but he was best known for his role as Black Panther in the Marvel Universe. Boseman first took on the role as T’Challa in Marvel’s 2016 film, Captain America: Civil War, and then starred in his own blockbuster Black Panther film in 2018.
Black Panther grossed $1.35 billion and became the 11th highest grossing movie of all time. It was the highest grossing movie of all time directed by a Black director (Ryan Coogler). Boseman’s performance was universally praised by critics, and he was set to revisit his role as King T’Challa in the Black Panther sequel, due out in 2022.
Kevin Feige, head of Marvel Studios, issued a statement praising the work and the person of Chadwick Boseman:
“He was our T’Challa, our Black Panther, and our dear friend,” Feige wrote. “Each time he stepped on set, he radiated charisma and joy, and each time he appeared on screen, he created something truly indelible. He embodied a lot of amazing people in his work, and nobody was better at bringing great men to life. He was as smart and kind and powerful and strong as any person he portrayed. Now he takes his place alongside them as an icon for the ages.”
“A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all, and brought you many of the films that you have come to love so much,” the statement reads. “From Marshall to Da 5 Bloods, August Wilson’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom and several more, were all filmed during and between countless surgeries and chemotherapy.”