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John David Washington on Chadwick Boseman: “He was responsible for a lot of positive change”

“There’s only one true king and that is Chadwick Boseman,” he said.

John David Washington and Chadwick Boseman Getty Images

John Washington David is paying homage to the late Chadwick Boseman.

In an interview with PEOPLE, Washington said that he never got the chance to work with the Black Panther star on a film, but he did get the opportunity to get to know him after they had a “brief encounter” during a Vanity Fair shoot.

“He was just as warm and welcoming as you would hope a leading man would be,” the Tenet star told the outlet. “That’s what he was, a leading man. He exemplified professionalism. He exemplified the kind of artist one would hope to be. He was very serious about his work.”

Washington, who is the son of Denzel Washington, added that Boseman “kept his private life separate” from his work which he says “added to his artistry.”

“At the same time, he did a lot of work in the community and he spoke openly about our community’s relationship in Hollywood,” he continued. “He had a global impact, being the face of one of the biggest franchises of all time in our industry.”

“He was responsible for a lot of positive change and a lot of medicine administered to a lot of kids that look like me with hopes and dreams of maybe becoming what he can become,” the BlacKkKlansman actor said. “It was a huge loss, but it’s a time to celebrate and forever celebrate him and what he has done. There’s only one true king and that is Chadwick Boseman.”

Boseman passed away last month after losing his battle with colon cancer. His family said that he learned about the diagnosis four years ago and kept his fight with the illness a secret.

Fans around the world were devastated to learn about his passing, especially after realizing that he filmed several movies while enduring countless surgeries and chemotherapy. Earlier this week, Boseman was laid to rest just a few miles away from his hometown of Anderson, South Carolina.

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