Is Chadwick Boseman Okay? New Video Of The 'Black Panther' Actor Looking Gaunt Have Fans Worried About His Health

Is Chadwick Boseman Okay? New Video Of The 'Black Panther' Actor Looking Gaunt Have Fans Speculating About His Health
Entertainment And News

It's been more than two years since Marvel fans last saw Black Panther on the big screen, and the last thing anyone expected was for Chadwick Boseman — the actor who played the title character and his alter ego, T'Challa — was to appear in a video looking vastly different than his character. 

And while, certainly, no one expects Boseman to look like the Black Panther all day, and every day, his gaunt face and scrawny body left more than a few fans wondering if he'd had just an extreme change in diet ... or if there was something more dire at hand.

Is Chadwick Boseman okay? 

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Let's look at what we know about these disturbing claims.

He shared a PSA to announce the launch of Operation 42. 

On Wednesday, April 15, 2020, Chadwick Boseman took to Instagram to announce the launch of Operation 42, which is "a donation of $4.2 million in personal protective equipment to hospitals that service the African American communities hit the hardest by the coronavirus pandemic," and paid tribute to his role as Jackie Robinson in the movie, 42. You can check out a copy of the video announcement below.

Instead, his drastic weight loss concerned several fans. 

Boseman's drastically gaunt face and scrawny body almost immediately got fans talking, to the point that no one seemed to care about Operation 42, since all they were talking about was Boseman's appearance. “Dude, I’m all in for this, but please reassure your fan base about your health ’cause even I am starting to be kinda worried,” wrote one fan on his Instagram post, which he subsequently deleted, and replaced with a post about Operation 42. "He's telling us to mind our broke-a** business," wrote one fan, under the replacement post. 

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This is not the first time his drastic weight loss has concerned his fans. 

Back in August of 2019, Boseman was enjoying a Pittsburgh Steelers football game and was caught on camera looking just as gaunt as he seems to be today. At the time of the August 2019 video release, Boseman's appearance also concerned fans. One suggested that he was "mad skinny." Another said he looked like he was about to "faint and fall out." Check out the video below and see what you think. 

Some people just chalked it up to his vegan diet and said he was "always skinny." 

Veteran journalist Xilla Valentine said that Boseman was "always skinny," and pointed to his 2017 interview with the 21 Bridges star as evidence of his claim. At the time of Valentine's interview with the actor, he was starring in the film Marshall opposite This is Us star Sterling K. Brown. Valentine also said that Boseman is a vegan, so his frame will naturally be much thinner than his more carnivorous counterparts. Check out Valentine's post below. 

Others say Boseman got thin for a role. 

It's not unusual for actors to lose weight — or gain weight — for a role. Take a look at how thin Christian Bale got for his role in The Machinist, or how much weight Robert DeNiro gained for his role in Raging Bull. Since Boseman is scheduled to appear in a film called Yasuke, in which he plays the first Black Samurai, it wouldn't be surprising if his extreme weight loss is for his upcoming role in that film. 

Whatever the case, Black Panther 2 will feature a (hopefully stronger-looking) Chadwick Boseman in May 2022. 

The follow-up to the wildly-successful Black Panther aptly titled Black Panther II— is scheduled to be released on May 6, 2022. Boseman, who is scheduled to appear as T'Challa/Black Panther in the film, will hopefully look a lot better than he has in recent photos.

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Bernadette Giacomazzo is an editor, writer, publicist, and photographer whose work has appeared in Teen Vogue, People, Us Weekly, The Source, XXL, HipHopDX, The Los Angeles Times, The New York Post, BET.com, and more.