The late Chadwick Boseman is adding to his legacy with his new win for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Motion Picture for Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom at the 2021 Screen Actors Guild Awards, which took place Sunday, April 4.
Boseman’s widow, Taylor Simone Ledward, accepted the award on the actor’s behalf at the virtual award show, which was broadcasted live on both TNT and TBS. In the acceptance speech, Ledward thanked God, Boseman’s parents, August Wilson, whom the film was adapted from his play and actor Denzel Washington who had once paid for her husband’s acting lessons.
“If you see the world unbalanced, be a crusader that pushes heavily on the see-saw of the mind,” she added. “That’s a quote by Chadwick Boseman.”
The actor, who was 43 at the time of his passing, won his first SAG award in 2019 for his role in Black Panther. In his acceptance speech he spoke on the importance of representation in film.
“We know what it’s like to be told there’s not a screen for you to be featured on, a stage for you to be featured on,” Boseman said. "We know what it’s like to be the tail, but not the head. We know what it’s like to be beneath, but not above. And that is what we went to work with every day."
"Because we knew not that we would be around during awards season or that it would make a billion dollars, but we knew that we had something special that we wanted to give the world — that we could be full human beings in the roles that we were playing," he continued. "That we could create a world that exemplified a world that we wanted to see.”
The 42 star also has won posthumous awards at this year’s Golden Globes and Critic’s Choice Awards for his role in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. He also grabbed two NAACP awards for his role in the 1920s-set drama and Spike Lee’s Da 5 Bloods.
In his wife’s emotional Golden Globe speech back in February she said, “He would thank God. He would thank his parents. He would thank his ancestors.”
“He would say something beautiful, something inspiring, something that amplifies that little voice inside of all of us," she added. "I don’t have his words, but we have to take all the moments to celebrate those we love.”‘
Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom was Boseman’s last film before his passing last summer due to colon cancer, which he fought privately. He is nominated for an Oscar for Best Actor at 93rd Academy Awards, which will air Sunday, April 25 on ABC. If won, Boseman would be the third actor to receive the award posthumous.