Chadwick Boseman’s brother Derrick spoke to TMZ (via The Independent) on behalf of the Boseman family to inform all of the late actor’s fans that there are no hard feelings following the 93rd Academy Awards, which ended with Anthony Hopkins winning the Oscar for Best Actor over presumed frontrunner Boseman. Hopkins won the BAFTA prize for his performance in “The Father,” so it’s not unprecedented that he also took home the Oscar, but many expected Boseman to prevail given his awards run (Golden Globe, SAG Award) and the Academy’s decision to shuffle the usual awards order to put the Best Actor category last. Clearly the Academy wanted to end the show on a Boseman tribute, but Hopkins won instead.
As reported by TMZ: “[Derrick] doesn’t view Chadwick not winning an Oscar for Best Actor as a snub because every nominated actor was excellent and deserving of the award. He says the family isn’t upset or agitated whatsoever that Chadwick’s name wasn’t called at the end of the Oscars ceremony. Derrick tells us the family wishes Hopkins and his family all the best because, as Derrick put it, ‘I’m sure [Anthony] would if Chad won.’ Derrick says Chadwick wasn’t one to put too much value on the Oscars anyway. Derrick says Chadwick ‘always described them to me as a campaign.’ That being said…Derrick says, yes, an Oscar would have been an achievement, but was never an obsession.”
Hopkins was not allowed to attend the Oscars via Zoom from his home in Wales, and therefore the Oscars ended without a Boseman tribute or a Hopkins speech. The ending to the 93rd Academy Awards drew widespread backlash, but ABC’s Rob Mills, executive VP of unscripted and alternative entertainment at Walt Disney Television, says it was a risk that paid off.
“It was not meant to end on somebody who was not present,” Mills told Variety after the Oscars. “It was a calculated risk, that I think still paid off because everybody was talking about it. Similarly, nobody wants the wrong envelope to happen, like it did three years ago, but everyone was talking about it. I think some people thought maybe they missed some awards. ‘Why is best picture early?’ or, ‘What’s happening, this is crazy,’ almost like, ‘How can this possibly happen? Best picture has to end it!’ Some people were upset, some people loved it and that was really the point that there was no apathy.”
Hopkins took to social media the morning after the Oscars to post an acceptance speech, one that included a shoutout to the late Boseman. The two-time Oscar winner said, “At 83 years of age, I did not expect to get this award, I really didn’t. I’m very grateful to the Academy — thank you. I want to pay tribute to Chadwick Boseman, who was taken from us far too early. Again, thank you all very much. I really did not expect this, I feel very privileged and honored, thank you.”
Head over to TMZ’s website to read more from Boseman’s family.