Actor Chadwick Boseman, star of Black Panther, has died at the age of 43 after battling colon cancer for the past four years.
“It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman,” a statement from the actor's official Twitter account read.
The actor had continued to play blockbuster roles in between cancer treatments since his diagnosis in 2016, appearing both as real historical figures and a superhero in the Avengers series.
“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,” according to the statement.
Boseman died at home in the company of his wife and his children. His diagnosis was not widely known, and fans had speculated on whether illness had caused his recent weight loss.
“It was the honor of his career to bring T‘Challa to life in Black Panther,” the statement reads. The cast won a Screen Actors Guild Award for their collective performance in the film. Boseman was slated to star in the sequel, scheduled for release in 2022.
The South Carolina native was well-known for his roles in biopics in addition to his parts in the Marvel cinematic universe. He portrayed Jackie Robinson, Thurgood Marshall, and James Brown, among others.
The actor was also vocal about his support for Black Lives Matter protests up until the very end. “From this country’s founding history; its economic base, its social standard, its penal system, its protection of property... White Supremacy and Racial Prejudice are its Pre-existing Conditions. Change is here,” he tweeted in mid-June amid a wave of protests sparked by George Floyd’s death at the hands of Minneapolis police.
In a video of himself posted in April, he took inspiration from Robinson in announcing a partnership that would deliver protective medical equipment to the Black community. In another, he wrote, “Lift up and amplify Black voices. Support Black owned businesses. Reach back and mentor...Happy Juneteenth!”