The 2020 MTV Video Music Awards featured touching tributes to Chadwick Boseman, who passed away Friday after a four-year battle with colon cancer.
At the start of the show, which was broadcast from New York City on Sunday night, host Keke Palmer honored the “Black Panther” actor in a heartfelt video message.
“Before we get into the music tonight, we need to talk about the devastating loss of Chadwick Boseman, an actor whose talent and passion is a true inspiration to all the fans he touched and everyone he encountered,” she said.
“We dedicate tonight’s show to a man whose spirit touched so many,” she added. “He is a true hero. Not just on-screen but in everything he did. His impact lives forever.”
Keke Palmer honors Chadwick Boseman at the #VMAs “We dedicate tonight’s show to the man whose spirit touched so many. He is a true hero, not just on screen but in everything he did. His impact lives forever.” pic.twitter.com/Gs3IZYXa2c— Alyssa Bailey (@alyssabailey) August 31, 2020
MTV also dedicated a segment to the 43-year-old leading man, in which they played his Best Hero acceptance speech from the 2018 MTV Movie & TV Awards.
After he got onstage to accept the golden popcorn trophy for his role in the Marvel superhero film, Boseman gave his award to James Shaw Jr., a real-life hero who earlier that year stopped a gunman at a Waffle House in Tennessee after he killed several people.
“Receiving an award for playing a superhero is amazing, but it’s even greater to acknowledge the heroes that we have in real life,” Boseman said at the event. “So I just want to acknowledge somebody that’s here today. James Shaw Jr. Where are you? Stand. If you don’t know James Shaw Jr., he fought off a gunman in Antioch, Tennessee, at a Waffle House. He saved lives. Come on up here.”
The world needs more superheroes, and we all deserve to see ourselves in them. Chadwick Boseman helped make that happen. Rest in power. pic.twitter.com/d05kkkQR6b— MTV (@MTV) August 31, 2020
Prior to the 2020 broadcast, MTV paid their respects to Boseman on social media, and announced that the award show was dedicated to the celebrated actor.
RIP Chadwick Boseman.— Video Music Awards (@vmas) August 31, 2020
Tonight's #VMAs is dedicated to him.
Friday on Twitter, a statement from Boseman’s family revealed that the star secretly battled colon cancer since 2016.
Despite his illness, Boseman appeared in acclaimed films such as “Marshall” and “Da 5 Bloods” while simultaneously undergoing treatment.
The statement also revealed that Boseman passed away at his home surrounded by family, including his wife, Taylor Simone Ledward.
As of this writing, the tweet has garnered over 7.4 million likes, making it the most-liked Twitter post of all time.
Chadwick will be missed.