Denzel Washington executive produced Netflix’s Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom which marks Chadwick Boseman’s final performance.
During an interview with CBS Sunday Morning, Washington recalled his time on-set of the highly-anticipated movie.
Very few people knew he had an ongoing battle with colon cancer which ultimately took his life months after he finished filming this movie. “It’s fascinating that nobody knew,” Washington said. “Well, credit to him; he kept it to himself. It was nobody’s business. He was there to deliver, and he delivered.”
The Academy Award-winning actor said he encouraged his protege to marry his then-girlfriend, Taylor Simone Ledward, because of the way she took care of him.
“Certain members of his team knew. His wife was there. They weren’t even married yet,” he added. “And I used to watch how she took care of him, and I actually said to him, I said, ‘Man, you know, you need to put a ring on that finger’ ’cause she kept her eye on him, and she watched him. And I’m like, man, she loves that guy.”
Apparently, Chadwick took his advice because the couple secretly tied the knot before his untimely passing in August.
During a 2019 speech at the 50th NAACP Image Awards, Boseman thanked Ledward while accepting his speech for outstanding actor in a motion picture for his portrayal of T’Challa in Black Panther.
“Simone, you’re with me every day. I have to acknowledge you right now. Love you,” Chadwick said.