Lupita Nyong’o has paid a touching tribute to her Black Panther co-star Chadwick Boseman.
In a message posted to Twitter on Tuesday (September 8), the actress spoke about Boseman and the impact he had on her life in the short time they knew each other.
“I write these words from a place of hopelessness, to honor a man who had great hope,” she began. “I am struggling to think and speak about my friend, Chadwick Boseman, in the past tense. It doesn’t make sense.”
Lupita described the news of his death as a “punch to my gut every morning,” adding that he was a man “who made the most of his time, and somehow also managed to take his time”.
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The pair worked together on Black Panther in 2018, and Lupita said that although they didn’t know each other for long, he “had a profound effect on me” in the time that they had together.
Describing Boseman on set, Lupita continued: “When we came together to make Black Panther, I remember being struck by his quiet, powerful presence.
“He had no airs about him, but there was a higher frequency that he seemed to operate from. You got the sense that he was fully present and also somehow fully aware of things in the distant future.
“As a result, I noticed that Chadwick never seemed rushed! He commanded his time with ease… and he put in the work with all of us.”
Lupita also praised Boseman for the support he showed her, writing: “His large hands would descend on my shoulders and give them a squeeze that relieved me of the tensions I did not realize I was holding.
“Chadwick’s hands were strong enough to carry the weight of the film and free enough to clasp mine when I needed it.”
Lupita went on to say how Boseman “used his body in every way he could.” “He did his own stunts, drummed at his own parties, danced many a night away, mastered martial arts… the list goes on.
“He loved, honored and respected that body, doing more with it than most. In so doing, he took the risk to be alive, fully alive. So it seems that it was life that gave up on Chadwick long before Chadwick gave up on life…”
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She also said Boseman inspired her to “be better, less petty, more purposeful,” adding: “He was fueled by love, not fear. He moved quietly, deliberately, and without imposing himself or his ideals on others.
“And yet he also made damn sure that his life meant something. He cared so deeply about humanity, about Black people, about his people.
“He activated our pride by pushing through and working with such high purpose in the films he chose to commit to, Chadwick has made the infinite his home.”
Lupita concluded by saying that Boseman’s power “lives on and will reverberate for generations to come”, adding: “He used his life force to tell meaningful stories. And now we tell his…”
Boseman tragically passed away at home on August 28, after a four-year battle with colon cancer.
Following his death, tributes have poured in from Hollywood and beyond. Last week, Black Panther director Ryan Coogler published a touching tribute to Boseman, sharing that he wasn’t aware of the details of the actor’s illness while he was working with him.
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