Ipswich tribute to Chadwick Boseman after tragic cancer death
PUBLISHED: 13:31 29 August 2020 | UPDATED: 14:56 29 August 2020
Former Ipswich mayor Glen Chisholm has spoken of his shock and sadness at the death of Black Panther star Chadwick Boseman, who had the title role in Marvel’s first BAME-led superhero movie.
The 2018 film is often described as the best superhero film ever made – and was seen as a breakthrough for black film-makers.
Almost all the stars, the director and most of the behind-the-camera talent came from a BAME background, yet it attracted a universal audience.
It was announced that Boseman had died at the age of 43 after four years of treatment, including surgery and chemotherapy after being diagnosed with Stage Three colon cancer.
He had continued to work between treatments and had not made his condition public.
Mr Chisholm is a regular cinema-goer and a great fan of superhero movies.
He is also one of the prime movers behind the Black Panther exhibition, which is now due to be held at Christchurch Mansion next year after being postponed because of the lockdown earlier this year.
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He said: “The Black Panther was an amazing film and Chadwick played his role with such dignity.
“To find out now that he was doing that between operations and other treatment is astonishing.
“I was devastated to hear the news – he was such an important role model for so many people.
“I really cannot believe the news. This will affect people around the world.”
A new Black Panther film starring Boseman is being prepared and had been due to be released in 2022, but filming had not yet started.
The Black Panther exhibition had been due to open at the Mansion from this summer after the Ed Sheeran: Made in Suffolk show closed in May.
However, because of the lockdown, Ed Sheeran’s exhibition was extended until November and the Black Panther show will be held next year.
That will feature costumes from the film, as well as artwork prepared for both the movie and the original Marvel comic strips – and with other exhibits explaining the cultural significance of comic books to tell the importance of storytelling in the 21st century.
Mr Chisholm could not say any more about the exhibition, but did say that the tragic news would bring an extra poignancy to a display which was already expected to attract a great deal of interest from a wide area – bringing more visitors to Christchurch Mansion.
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