Thanks to Bong Joon-ho’s phenomenal Parasite, last year’s Academy Awards ceremony was a game-changer. This year’s Oscars show, by contrast, is already being viewed as a step back for the Academy. Chadwick Boseman died in August 2020, making Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom his final film. Many expected Boseman to nab the Oscar for Best Actor, but it was Anthony Hopkins who ended up winning for his performance in The Father. Luckily, Hopkins recognized the upset even before outraged viewers could take to Twitter, posting an Instagram video paying tribute to the late actor.
You can check out what Anthony Hopkins had to say about Chadwick Boseman in the clip below:
Marvel fans may know Anthony Hopkins as Odin from the first three Thor films, but the impact of his work stretches far beyond the Nine Realms. Across his career, Hopkins has portrayed Dr. Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, Claudius in Hamlet, Frederick Treves in The Elephant Man, and countless other timeless roles. Additionally, he is a long-time theatre actor, with a noted emphasis on the works of William Shakespeare.
Chadwick Boseman is perhaps best known for playing Black Panther in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but his most impressive roles actually have nothing to do with comic book heroes. His performance in Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods earned him praise from critics and audiences alike, with his turns as Jackie Robinson in 42 and Thurgood Marshall in the 2017 biopic Marshall also standing tall as some of his best performances. Still, that’s not to knock his turn as Black Panther at all. He should never be recast because he was T’Challa, and no actor or actress can replicate what he so effortlessly brought to the role.
Both Anthony Hopkins and Chadwick Boseman have won their fair share of accolades. Hopkins won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his portrayal of Hannibal Lecter in The Silence of the Lambs, but he has also earned himself several Emmy Awards and five BAFTA Awards. In February 2021, Boseman won the NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture for his role in Da 5 Bloods. His performance in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom earned him a Critics’ Choice Movie Award for Best Actor, as well as a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Leading Role and an AACTA Award for Best International Actor.
It will be interesting to see how people respond to Anthony Hopkins paying tribute to Chadwick Boseman. Some are still so upset by the snub that they may not even accept what he is saying. Others are happy that Hopkins won. Hopefully, though, the former crowd come to realize that Hopkins also did an incredible job in his respective role. Whether or not he deserved the award over Boseman will undoubtedly be a topic of debate for quite some time.
Should Chadwick Boseman have won the Oscar for Best Actor, or did Anthony Hopkins deserve the award? The debate will likely be a strong one, but it is rewarding to see the winner pay tribute to the departed thespian.