This Star Regrets Sour First Impression of Co-Star Chadwick Boseman
First impressions aren’t always accurate. Such is the case with Chadwick Boseman‘s former co-star in Da Bloods. He now “regrets” his initial reaction to the Black Panther star, saying he didn’t know Boseman was dealing with a fatal illness while filming.
One of Chadwick Boseman’s final films took years to make
Spike Lee’s Da Bloods released onto the Netflix platform in June 2020, but the war drama’s conception happened way back in 2013. It took years of reworking the script by BlacKkKlansman co-writers Lee and Paul De Meo before they got it right.
By early 2019, filming began in Southeast Asia and lasted through June. As one of Lee’s most expensive films to date ($35 million to $45 million), the long wait seems to have paid off as Da Bloods continues to receive positive critical acclaim.
The film follows Vietnam War veterans who go back to Asia in search of a buried treasure and their previously fallen squad leader. Aside from Boseman, Da Bloods also stars one Hollywood icon who now admits he didn’t have the best first impression of Boseman.
Boseman’s co-star in ‘Da Bloods’ had a bad first impression of the actor
The Wire actor Clarke Peters plays Otis in Da Bloods. his earliest memories of Boseman are the ones he regrets most.
In an interview with Good Morning Britain (per Entertainment Tonight), the actor spoke of Boseman and their time on the set.
“I have to say with a little bit of regret that I probably wasn’t the most altruistic in that environment, but hindsight teaches us a lot of things,” Peters said.
“What I’m addressing is, basically, my wife asked what Chadwick was like. I was really excited to work with him. I said, ‘I think he’s a little bit precious.’ And she said, ‘Why?’ And I said, ‘Because he’s surrounded by people who are fawning over him.’”
Peters described Boseman’s entourage which included Boseman’s girlfriend (at the time) “holding his hand” and a “Chinese practitioner” who came along to massage his back. He also brought a makeup artist who rubbed Boseman’s feet.
“I’m thinking maybe the Black Panther thing went to his head,” Peters added.“I regret even having those thoughts because they were really looking after him.”
He said they worked in, “104-degree weather, running with equipment up to 40 pounds on our backs, going through these scenes.”
Peters tearfully apologized saying in retrospect, he now understands while all of the care was needed. As many remember, Boseman died on Aug. 28 from stage four colon cancer. He battled the illness privately but continued to work until the end.
“Chadwick’s role is the one that he played in life. He plays the hero. He plays the one who grounds us,” he said. “He plays the man who spurred us to go on knowing that we would get to the end and that we would all get home.”
On June 26 — two months before his passing — Boseman tweeted a photo of his time on Da Bloods with Peters.
“The beauties of filming. Always wanted to be Wired with this guy. @clarkepeters #da5bloods,” he wrote.
‘Da Bloods’ director Spike Lee says he also didn’t know Boseman was sick while filming
Peters isn’t the only one who didn’t know about Boseman’s illness. Lee revealed in an interview with Variety he didn’t know, either.
“I didn’t know Chad was sick,” Lee said. “He did not look well, but my mind never took that he had cancer. It was a very strenuous shoot. I mean, we all didn’t get to Vietnam until the end of the movie at Ho Chi Minh City. But that other stuff, the jungle stuff, was shot in Thailand. It was 100 degrees every day.”
He continued: “It was also at that time the worst air pollution in the world. I understand why Chadwick didn’t tell me because he didn’t want me to take it easy. If I had known, I wouldn’t have made him do the stuff. And I respect him for that.”
The famed director says he was in shock over the news of Boseman’s death. This led him to rewatch Da Bloods where it takes on a new meaning — specifically, a particular scene in which Boseman’s character “Stormin’” Norman Earl Holloway is bathed in a “heavenly white” type of light. Lee said he felt the magic of it while they shot it.
“It was God’s heavenly light. We didn’t have light. Delroy [Lindo] is talking to the camera, talking about his conversation with God. We go up, and we come down and we find this heavenly light,” he said.
“It’s Chadwick standing in that light, in that pose. That was God up there. I don’t care what nobody says. That was God’s heavenly light, because that scene’s not lit. That’s natural light. And that was God sending heavenly light on Chadwick.”
Lee continued: “There’s a line in the movie where Clarke [Peters] says he’s the best damn soldier ever. And Chadwick was — is — a soldier. This is conjecture: There’s a possibility he thought this might be his last film. And God gave him one more with Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. But now looking at that, he was playing it. Stormin’ Norman says, ‘If I have to go out, I’m going gangbusters.’ And that’s what he did.”