“Black Panther” film star Chadwick Boseman, an actor whose work celebrated African-American pioneers and culture, has died at age 43. He was battling colon cancer for four years.
Boseman was a native of South Carolina. He began his screen career in episodes of television dramas such as “Third Watch,” “Law & Order” and “ER.” He passed away at his home in Los Angeles, with his wife and family at his side, said Reuters.
Boseman made his feature film debut with a small part in the 2008 sports biopic “The Express.”
He went on to star as a number of other real-life characters famed for breaking America’s racial barriers. He played singer James Brown in “Get on Up,” Supreme Court Justice Thurgood Marshall in “Marshall,” and baseball pioneer Jackie Robinson in “42.”
But the actor’s most memorable role was his performance as T’Challa, king of the fictional, futuristic African kingdom of Wakanda and the crime fighter known as Black Panther. Black Panther was the first major studio superhero movie featuring a predominantly African-American cast.
Embraced by global audiences, “Black Panther” became the second highest-grossing movie at box offices worldwide in 2018.
The film was nominated for six Oscars, including best picture. It won three Academy Awards. It also won the top Screen Actors Guild award that year for best movie ensemble.
Tears and tributes for Chadwick Boseman
Tributes and expressions of shock poured in on Twitter from fans.
The Twitter-Facebook statement said Boseman was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer in 2016, an illness that progressed ultimately to stage 4 and went publicly undisclosed until his death, though he had grown noticeably thin in recent public appearances and social media posts.
“We never know what people are enduring,” Bernice King, the daughter of the late civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr., wrote on Twitter in a salute to the actor. “Humans … we are wonders. Thank you, Chadwick, for gifting us with your greatness in the midst of a painful struggle.”
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