Washington: Chadwick Boseman, star of the ground-breaking superhero movie Black Panther, has died after a private four-year battle with colon cancer, his publicist told AFP. Boseman (43) never publicly discussed his condition and continued to work on major Hollywood films during and between “countless” operations and chemotherapy, his family said in a statement.
“It was the honour of his career to bring King T'Challa to life in Black Panther,” they said. A true fighter, Chadwick persevered through it all. He died in his home "with his wife and family by his side," the statement said.
Boseman played the first black superhero to get his own standalone film in the record-breaking Marvel franchise with 2018's Black Panther.
The news of Boseman's death sent shockwaves through Hollywood and around the world. “The true power of @chadwickboseman was bigger than anything we saw on screen,” wrote Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.
“From the Black Panther to Jackie Robinson, he inspired generations and showed them they can be anything they want -- even super heroes.”
Biden's running mate Kamala Harris said she was "heartbroken" and referenced Howard University in Washington, nicknamed Bison, where they both studied. Harris tweeted: "My friend and fellow Bison Chadwick Boseman was brilliant, kind, learned, and humble," she tweeted. "He left too early but his life made a difference. Sending my sincere condolences to his family."