The directors behind Avengers: Endgame looked back on working with Black Panther actor Chadwick Boseman in Captain America: Civil War.
Fans around the world have only just come to terms with the loss of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman and there’s been plenty of conversation about the legacy he leaves behind after the work he put in as T’Challa in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. In a recent interview with Collider, the directors behind Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame looked back on their time working with Boseman. Anthony Russo recalled how the star wanted to find a specific African accent for his role, praising his dedication for helping to develop the character.
“This is a very simple detail, but early on when we were shooting Civil War which was his first performance as Black Panther, it was very difficult working with him to find the specific African accent, the specific version of Africa that we were trying to craft into the fictional Wakanda. And once he cracked that character and found that accent, he stayed in that accent through the entire shoot even when he was off camera. He would only speak in that manner as T’Challa.
I think that just speaks to the fact of how deeply he had built that character and how he had to hold onto that character through the entire process in order to perform it. It’s just incredibly admirable when you find somebody who puts that level of their being and their focus and their entire effort into what they’re doing, and it translates to the screen. You feel something different when you watch him perform, not just as T’Challa but in all the roles. He was an incredible inspiration, an incredible human being, just the height of professionalism and artistry. We’re so grateful for our time with him.”
In recent news, the team at Ironhead Studio also recalled their time working with Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman on crafting the iconic costume, calling him an “amazing human being.” It’s a sentiment clearly echoed by Joe Russo, who explained how much Boseman understood the cultural importance that Black Panther would have. The Avengers director suggested that the star most likely didn’t want his illness to become the story over the significance of Black Panther and what it would mean to audiences across the world.
“He had incredible integrity. He was very thoughtful, artistic, elegant human being that was just a pleasure to be around and a pleasure to work with. As Anth said, not only was he an actor he was a filmmaker. He understood filmmaking. He understood storytelling. I think the thing that’s most important to stress was the people who worked with him over the last six years on several projects, was what he did and the way that he dealt with his illness was so brave and exemplified such integrity, because he put aside any sort of personal agenda for what he knew was a real historical moment in time in respect to what Black Panther meant to people. I don’t think he wanted his illness to become the story. He wanted Black Panther and this all-black cast to be the story. And that’s one of the bravest things that we’ve seen anyone do, that we’ve dealt with on a personal level.”
As shared by his representative, Chadwick Boseman was diagnosed with stage III color cancer in 2016 and fought the disease for four years as it progressed to stage IV. The Black Panther star had not publicly disclosed his diagnosis before his death. He passed away at his home in Los Angeles, surrounded by his wife and loved ones.
Chadwick Boseman began his acting career in television, landing his first role in 2003. Boseman’s big break came much later with his portrayal of baseball legend Jackie Robinson in the Brian Helgeland-directed biopic 42. He then gained further recognition for his work as James Brown in Tate Taylor’s Get on Up.
Following his roles as Jackie Robinson and James Brown, Chadwick Boseman was cast as T’Challa in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The actor made his debut as the iconic Marvel character in 2016’s Captain America: Civil War before reprising the role in the standalone film Black Panther, directed by Ryan Coogler. Boseman’s Black Panther was then seen in Avengers: Infinity War and its follow-up Endgame.
Chadwick Boseman was last seen in Spike Lee’s Netflix film Da 5 Bloods. Prior to that, Boseman starred in the Brian Kirk-directed action thriller 21 Bridges, which was produced by Avengers: Infinity War and Endgame helmers Joe and Anthony Russo. His final film, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, arrives on Netflix next month.