Chadwick Boseman’s family have defended Sir Anthony Hopkins’ Oscar win, according to US media, following a backlash from fans who thought the award should have gone to the late Black Panther star.
Ahead of the Academy Awards on Sunday, it was widely expected that Boseman would receive the prize for best leading actor posthumously for his performance in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, the last film he made before he died.
However, Sir Anthony, 83, was named the winner for his role as a man grappling with dementia in The Father, with his name coming as a surprise announcement – compounded by the fact the running order had been switched from usual to make it the night’s final award, rather than best film, and Hopkins was absent from the ceremony
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After posthumous honours at the Golden Globes and the Critics’ Choice Awards, Boseman had been the favourite for the Oscartoo, and fans were quick to criticise on social media.
Now, his brother Derrick Boseman has told US entertainment site TMZ there was no snub and that the family is not upset.
Every nominated actor was deserving of the prize, Derrick reportedly said, and wished Sir Anthony all the best.
“I’m sure [Anthony] would if Chad won,” he was quoted as saying. Sir Anthony did in fact pay tribute to Boseman in a speech posted on his official Instagram page following the ceremony, saying the star had been taken “far too early”.
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Chadwick never placed too much value on the Oscars, Derrick reportedly told TMZ, and was quoted as saying his brother “always described them to me as a campaign”.
An Oscar would have been an achievement but was not an obsession for the actor, he reportedly said.
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Black Panther star Boseman died in August 2020 at the age of 43 after suffering from colon cancer for four years, keeping his illness private.
Sir Anthony, who at 83 becomes the oldest Oscar winner ever, was in Wales at the time of the Oscars show.
Following ceremonies such as the Golden Globes going virtual, the Oscars stuck to a no Zoom policy but set up international hubs, with one at the BFI in London, where Sir Anthony’s The Father co-star Olivia Colman was in attendance.