In August, fans all across the globe were left heartbroken with the untimely death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman. Three months away from his 44th birthday, Chadwick Boseman lost his long and painful battle with colon cancer that was diagnosed back in 2016. His sudden death left his friends, co-actors, and many notable celebrities devastated as he had kept his illness a secret till the very end.
The crushing news of Chadwick Boseman’s untimely death flooded the social media platforms with heartfelt messages from his friends and co-actors who shared the stage with the late actor. From his Marvel co-stars Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Michael B. Jordan to the Vice President candidate Kamala Harris, everyone shared their time spent with the late actor. Now, veteran actress Viola Davis has opened up about her thoughts regarding the Black Panther star from their time on the sets of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.
In her recent interview with Zora, the Academy Award-winning actress revealed her time spent with Chadwick Boseman on the sets of his last movie. Earlier this year, Chadwick Boseman’s photos were revealed in which the actor had lost significant weight, raising concerns regarding his health. As the 21 Bridges star had chosen to keep his illness a secret even from his co-actors, Viola Davis naturally thought that it must have been for a future role.
“He was extremely tired,” the Oscar winner said, remembering Chadwick. “But, there’s a lot of tired people in the business, especially people in his position.”
“In hindsight, I noticed all the wonderful people he surrounded himself with were always praying over him and meditating over him, and I thought that was part of what he demanded or [how he] created that sacred space. I didn’t know they were just trying to pour life and energy into him.”
In 2016, Chadwick Boseman was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer. However, the actor managed to give some of the best performances of his life while battling the deadly disease which had further exacerbated to stage IV in later years. Some of his iconic roles include King T’Challa/Black Panther, Jacob King (Message from the King), Thurgood Marshall (Marshall), Andre Davis (21 Bridges), and Norman Holloway (Da 5 Bloods) after being diagnosed with colon cancer.
Despite his unbreakable will, Chadwick Boseman was slowly losing the battle with cancer over the years. His rapid weight loss had earlier become a talking point earlier this year. While many thought the actor was shaping up for a future role, a few did raise concern over his sudden change in appearance. But nonetheless, the talented actor did not stop signing up for movies, including the upcoming Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom.
On the sets of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Chadwick Boseman surrounded himself with a Chinese practitioner, massager, and his wife Taylor Simone Ledward. He also had all of them around on the sets of Da 5 Bloods, as revealed by his co-actor Peter Clarke in a heartbreaking video. As the cancer had taken its toll on his body, his weight loss led to fatigue, as told by Viola Davis.
“He would just fall asleep standing up, but boy, when that camera rolled? You didn’t see any of it.”
“He was not chasing the green, not chasing the money, just chasing the work,” Viola continued. “He had a willingness to let go of ego and, almost an insistence, to leave Chadwick Boseman at the door, and leave that Black Panther-making-a-billion-dollars at the door.”
Despite living on borrowed time, Chadwick Boseman probably felt that he would beat the disease with his will to live. But unfortunately, the beloved actor lost a strenuous battle with cancer after four long years. But even after his untimely death, he still inspires all of us with his unbreakable will, unimaginable courage, and boundless compassion.
Ma Rainey‘s Black Bottom is Chadwick Boseman’s last movie which will be released on December 18, 2020 exclusively on Netflix.