Black Panther stars Forest Whitaker and Danai Gurira shared their tributes to Chadwick Boseman this weekend, following his death on Friday at 43. Whitaker sent his "love and prayers" to Boseman's family, which Gurira called Boseman a "pure-hearted, profoundly generous, regal, fun guy." While Boseman starred as T'Challa, Gurira played the leader of the Dora Milaje, Okoye, and Whitaker played Zuri.
On Saturday, Whitaker shared a black and white photo of Boseman smiling on Instagram. "Your light brightened our days. It will continue to brighten our hearts and minds. Let the heavens be blessed as you illuminate the sky," the Oscar-winner wrote. "Sending my love and prayers to the family. May God continue to hold you in his everlasting embrace."
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Gurira shared a long statement on Instagram Sunday night, reflecting on just how difficult it was for her to put the right words together. Boseman "made everyone feel loved, heard, and seen," the Walking Dead star wrote. "He played great, iconic roles because he possessed inside of himself that connection to greatness to be able to so richly bring them to life. He had a heroic spirit, and marched to the beat of his own drum; hence his excellence as an artist and the incredible courage and determination as he faced life’s challenges; while still guiding us all."
At the end of her message, Guirira said she could not even "wrap my mind" around Boseman's death and noted how inspirational his performances remain. "The children he inspired, my heart aches for them, to lose their hero just as they finally found him," she wrote. "I am so thankful to have taken the Black Panther journey with him. To have known him, spent time in his light and leadership and to call him forever a friend."
Boseman died Friday night after a four-year battle with colon cancer. He recently finished filming on Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, a film adaptation of the August Wilson play co-starring Viola Davis. The movie will be released later this year on Netflix. Boseman also starred in Spike Lee's Vietnam War Drama Da 5 Bloods, which was released on Netflix in June. He played Black Panther in four Marvel films, Captain America: Civil War, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, and Avengers: Endgame. As Gurira mentioned, Boseman had several other important films on his resume, including Get On Up, 42, and Marshall.