On the day that Major League Baseball is celebrating Jackie Robinson and his legacy, the man who played Robinson in the critically-acclaimed biopic 42 has died. Chadwick Boseman was 43. The actor had been fighting colon cancer for four years, according to a statement released by his family.
42 Actor Chadwick Boseman Dead at 43
— Chadwick Boseman (@chadwickboseman) August 29, 2020
Arguably the actor’s most notable role came in Marvel’s 2018 Black Panther film, playing the lead character, T’Challa. However, Boseman’s first leading role was Jackie Robinson in 42. Following the success of that debut, Boseman earned lead roles in Get On Up as James Brown, Marshall as Thurgood Marshall, and in Black Panther as T’Challa. He also made many appearances throughout the Avengers series. Boseman made his feature film debut playing Floyd Little in The Express: The Ernie Davis Story, a movie about the first African-American to win the Heisman Trophy.
Boseman was born in Anderson, South Carolina. In his junior year of high school, he wrote his first play. He later attended Howard University, where he earned a Bachelors in Directing. Boseman proposed to his longtime girlfriend Taylor Simone Ledward in October of 2019, and they reportedly tied the knot earlier this year.
Boseman’s death comes on the same day that MLB celebrates the life of Jackie Robinson. Robinson, the first African-American to play in the majors, entered the Hall of Fame in 1962. Major League Baseball has celebrated “Jackie Robinson Day” on April 15th every year since 2004. With the lack of baseball in April this season, the league decided to celebrate it on August 28th.
The two will be connected forever. Boseman’s portrayal of Robinson gives baseball fans one of the best historical baseball movies that have been made. Numerous groups will feel the sting of the loss of such a great actor. From the actors he worked alongside to the people whose lives he touched on-screen, Boseman will not soon be forgotten.
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