Hollywood stars and directors have been united in grief following the shock death of Chadwick Boseman who lost a secret four year battle with cancer on Friday.
The Black Panther actor died aged 43, surrounded by family, following a secret battle with the disease – which he had not disclosed prior to his death.
Captain America and Avengers co-star, Don Cheadle, was one of the first to express his sadness.
Sharing a photo of himself with the late actor, Don – who plays James “Rhodey” Rhodes / War Machine in the Marvel films – tweeted: “i will miss you, birthday brother. you were always light and love to me. my god … forever and ever.”
American talk show icon, Oprah Winfrey, took to social media to pay a poignant tribute to Chadwick – and highlighted his courage in combating his cancer while working.
She tweeted: “What a gentle gifted SOUL. Showing us all that Greatness in between surgeries and chemo. The courage, the strength, the Power it takes to do that. This is what Dignity looks like.”
Other Marvel stars took to social media to express their grief and shock.
Mark Ruffalo – who plays the Incredible Hulk – tweeted: “All I have to say is the tragedies amassing this year have only been made more profound by the loss of #ChadwickBoseman. What a man, and what an immense talent. Brother, you were one of the all time greats and your greatness was only beginning. Lord love ya. Rest in power, King.”
While Brie Larson – who plays Carol Danvers, aka Captain Marvel – shared a photo of herself with Chadwick alongside a broken heart emoji.
On Instagram, she wrote: “Chadwick was someone who radiated power and peace. Who stood for so much more than himself. Who took the time to really see how you were doing and gave words of encouragement when you felt unsure.
“I’m honored to have the memories I have. The conversations, the laughter. My heart is with you and your family. You will be missed and never forgotten. Rest in power and peace my friend.”
Chadwick’s on-screen mother in the Marvel films, Angela Basset – who plays Queen Ramonda – shared an incredible tribute on Instagram.
She wrote: “It was meant to be for Chadwick and me to be connected, for us to be family. But what many don’t know is our story began long before his historic turn as Black Panther.
“During the premiere party for Black Panther, Chadwick reminded me of something. He whispered that when I received my honorary degree from Howard University, his alma mater, he was the student assigned to escort me that day. And here we were, years later as friends and colleagues, enjoying the most glorious night ever!
“We’d spent weeks prepping, working, sitting next to each other every morning in makeup chairs, preparing for the day together as mother and son. I am honored that we enjoyed that full circle experience.
“This young man’s dedication was awe-inspiring, his smile contagious, his talent unreal. So I pay tribute to a beautiful spirit, a consummate artist, a soulful brother…”thou aren’t not dead but flown afar…”. All you possessed, Chadwick, you freely gave. Rest now, sweet prince.”
While the official Marvel Studios account tweeted: “Our hearts are broken and our thoughts are with Chadwick Boseman’s family. Your legacy will live on forever. Rest In Peace.”
Captain America star, Chris Evans, shared photographs of himself with Chadwick.
He tweeted: “I’m absolutely devastated. This is beyond heartbreaking. Chadwick was special. A true original.
“He was a deeply committed and constantly curious artist. He had so much amazing work still left to create. I’m endlessly grateful for our friendship. Rest in power, King.”
Guardians of the Galaxy and Avengers star Zoe Saldana expressed her shock – sharing a photo of Chadwick on Instagram alongside a heartfelt tribute.
She wrote: “Rest in Power King T’Challa. My heart is so heavy right now. Your passing has hit me hard.
“I will tell my sons about you forever. You were one of the classiest men I have ever met in my life.
“It was an honor to have shared minutes with you on screen and to have crossed paths with you during press. Though our acquaintance was light you always left a lasting impression because of your energy, poise and gentle manner.
“May the Universe deliver you to your promise land brother.”
Many others in Hollywood expressed their shock over Chadwick’s death.
Acclaimed Get Out director, Jordan Peele, expressed his devastation when he tweeted: “This is a crushing blow” in response to news of Chadwick’s passing.
While award winning actress Viola Davis – who filmed yet-to-be released Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom with the actor – tweeted: “Chadwick…..no words to express my devastation of losing you. Your talent, your spirit, your heart, your authenticity……..
“It was an honor working beside you, getting to know you….Rest well prince…May flights of angels sing thee to thy heavenly rest. I love you!”
Director Matthew A Cherry very poignantly paid tribute to Chadwick’s strength in the face of his struggles.
Noting the number of action films the star has made over the past four years, he tweeted: “Chadwick was really out here shooting all of these huge action movies while fighting stage 4 colon cancer. Man. Strong isn’t even the word.”
Music Icon Mariah Carey tweeted: “This is heartbreaking. Thank you for persevering through it all. You leave behind an incredible body of work and an inspiring legacy. Rest in power. Chadwick Forever.”