Netflix has been on a roll with its documentaries, introducing audiences to some of the most gripping tales of crime, critically detailing the effects that humankind is leaving on the world and telling stories that wouldn’t otherwise have been told with such valour. One such story, recently announced by Netflix, will look at the life of the late Chadwick Boseman.
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The actor, who was only 43 when he passed away in August last year following a long, private battle with colon cancer, will be honoured in a special documentary by the streaming site, titled ‘Chadwick Boseman: Portrait of an Artist’. Netflix describes the documentary as:
“An intimate look at the Oscar®-nominated actor’s artistry, and the acting process which informed his transformative performances.”
The minute and a half long trailer opens with a voice clip of Boseman saying:
“I’m Chadwick Boseman, I’m an artist. People call me an actor, I wouldn’t necessarily call myself an actor. I would call myself an artist,”
And that is the premise for the documentary: not Chadwick Boseman as “an actor” but really, “something more”. And to help illustrate this point, people who have worked closely with the late actor in recent years are brought in to talk about ‘Chad’. These include his ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ co-stars Viola Davis, Glynn Turman and Taylour Paige, as well as director George C. Wolfe and composer, arranger and music producer Branford Marsalis. Others featured in the special are Boseman’s ‘Black Panther’ co-star Danai Gurira, actor and ‘Black Panther’ dialect coach Andile Nebulane, ‘Get on Up’ and ‘Black Panther’ choreographer Aakomon “AJ” Jones, ‘Get on Up’ director Tate Taylor, ’42’ director Brian Helgeland, ‘Marshall’ director Reginald Hudlin, ‘Da 5 Bloods’ helmer Spike Lee, New Federal Theater Director Woodie King Jr., and actor, director, producer and Howard University Professor, Phylicia Rashad.
Boseman’s final film, ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’, was released posthumously to critical acclaim, earning him an Academy Award nomination for ‘Best Actor’ and a Golden Globe Award for ‘Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama’ (which he won). Boseman also received four nominations at the 27th Screen Actors Guild Awards for his work in ‘Da 5 Bloods’ and ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’, the most for a performer at a single ceremony, winning ‘Male Actor in a Leading Role’ for the latter movie.
‘Chadwick Boseman: Portrait of an Artist’ will be available globally on Netflix on Saturday, April 17th but will only be available for treating for a limited 30-day window.
*Cover image credits: Netflix