Viola Davis ‘broke down’ after learning of ‘Ma Rainey’ costar Chadwick Boseman’s death

The Oscar-winning actress says she remembers Boseman as someone who lived in the moment and with the 'utmost integrity'

Viola Davis and Chadwick Boseman shared the screen in Netflix’s new film, Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Boseman’s final film before he died of colon cancer in August.

In an interview with Yahoo Entertainment, the Oscar-winning actress shared her reaction to the news that her co-star, 43-year-old Boseman, had died.

Read More: Chadwick Boseman takes a final, flawless bow in ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’

(Photo: Getty Images)

“I broke down when I heard he passed,” Davis said. “Lord knows we all would’ve wanted him to live another 50 years. We all want longevity. But I can’t see his life tragically at all … Because I felt like he was always living in the moment, squeezing out every bit of life. What it makes me think is, it’s not the quantity, it’s the quality.”

“What I hold onto with Chad is that he lived his life his way,” Davis continued. “I would say his professional life has absolutely paralleled his personal life, that’s my guess, in terms of how he lived with the utmost integrity.”

Read More: Denzel Washington says he encouraged Chadwick Boseman to marry wife

As previously reported by theGrio, Davis revealed that Chadwick Boseman held a special place in her heart and she noted how much she respected his work ethic.

Chadwick Boseman on the set of Marvel’s Black Panther. (Photo: Marvel)

“Chadwick is my baby,” she said while reminding viewers she played his mother in Get on Up. The Tony Award-winning actress spoke on how seriously he took his work as an actor and explained that he wasn’t distracted by the glitz and glamor of his profession the way so many stars are.

In a recent interview with The Guardian, Davis said she thinks Chadwick Boseman will be remembered as a hero. “There’s a part of the public that’s going to associate that with Black Panther; I do not,” she said. “I associate that with his authenticity, especially in the midst of a profession that sometimes can suck that out of you.”

“I think that his legacy, his body of work, his integrity, is going to have influence on generation upon generation to come,” Davis, 55, added.

Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, which features Chadwick Boseman’s last film performance, is streaming on Netflix now.

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