Plans for a permanent memorial for late actor Chadwick Boseman are moving forward in his hometown of Anderson, South Carolina. According to a spokesperson for Mayor Terence Roberts' office, the city is currently hard at work on a permanent public tribute in the form of a statue.
TMZ reports that while details of the tribute are still uncertain, the city still working on concrete plans, the mayor's office is seeking public input to ensure the monument "does the entire city proud." The city has reportedly already contacted an artist to take up the project, for which they are currently brainstorming ideas, wishing to produce something fit "for a king" and something that will adequately honor their hometown hero. This tribute, according to the outlet, will be a combination of "sculpture with mural and/or art elements."
At this time, a location for this statue has not been determined, and it remains unclear if the city will opt to listen to two Change.org petitions calling for the replacement of a Confederate statue located in front of the city's courthouse with a statue of Boseman. According to those petitions, which have received more than 60,000 signatures jointly, "it is time to unify Anderson around a true local hero and time to honor all South Carolinians, not just the ideals of a few." They note that "it is important that we honor a true local legend," stating that Boseman "opened many doors for many young black people with his leading roles in movies such as Black Panther or Marshall." To replace a Confederate monument, however, a two-thirds vote from the state legislature is required, meaning Mayor Roberts would not be able to make the call alone.
As the city of Anderson works to flesh out the details of a permanent tribute to Boseman, the city is also set to hold a remembrance ceremony on Thursday, which will feature three guest speakers and include a screening of Black Panther. Boseman's former high school, T. L. Hanna High School, meanwhile, is also looking to pay tribute to the actor, who died following a four-year battle with colon cancer. The school's principal, Walter Mayfield, announced that the school is working to create the Chadwick Boseman Memorial Scholarship, which will be awarded to one student each year. Boseman's former basketball coach at the school is also urging the school to retire his jersey number, 32, in his memory, something that the school has never done for a former student before.