American actor, Chadwick Boseman (43) sadly passed away this morning after battling colon cancer for the last four years.
Staring in films such as 42, Da Bloods Five, Get On Up and the yet to be released Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, it is clear that Boseman had a passion for using his talent for presenting Black stories.
Perhaps his most recognisable role is Boseman’s portrayal of King T’Challa, The Black Panther in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. After we were introduced to T’Challa in 2016, the character quickly became a fan favourite and in 2018 and the release of his solo film, ‘Black Panther’, in 2018 was met with both critical and audience success.
The film became a beacon for Black representation in the superhero genre. Carefully crafted and beautifully executed, the film shows the viewer the fictional world of Wakanda which is grounded in real African traditions. Boseman’s incredible performance in the film, depicts a man struggling with following the traditions of his nation whilst following his morals and trying to ensure the positive progression of his people.
In a statement posted on Boseman’s twitter early this morning, having the opportunity to portray the Black Panther was the “honor of his career”.
Black Panther allowed for Black people to feel truly represented on screen. Not only a hero, but a King, Boseman’s Black Panther demands respect every second he is on screen. Young Black children now have a hero to look up to, that represents their culture, that is not only a powerful hero, but a compassionate leader who is respected both with the mask and without.
An incredible actor who was so passionate to tell Black stories that he worked through “ countless surgeries and chemotherapy”. Chadwick Boseman will be truly missed, but will be remembered for empowering and inspiring people all over the world.