The social media platform made the announcement following the sudden, shock news of Boseman’s death, aged 43, from colon cancer. Boseman had not disclosed his diagnosis – made in 2016 – to the public.
The tweet announcing Boseman’s death was posted at 10:11 p.m. on Friday 28 August. At the time of writing, it had more than 6.4m “likes” and 3 million retweets.
“It is with immeasurable grief that we confirm the passing of Chadwick Boseman. Chadwick was diagnosed with stage III colon cancer in 2016, and battled with it these last 4 years as it progressed to stage IV,” the tweet announced.
Twitter said in a statement: “Fans are coming together on Twitter to celebrate the life of Chadwick Boseman, and the tweet sent from his account last night is now the most liked tweet of all time on Twitter.”
The tweet from Boseman’s account surpassed the previous record-holder from former US president Barack Obama, who shared the Nelson Mandela quote: “No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin or his background or his religion.”
Obama’s tweet was posted on 12 August 2017 – the same day of a deadly car attack against people protesting white supremacy in Charlottesville, Va.
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Twitter also noted that fans of Black Panther, in which Boseman starred, are working to organise “watch parties” using the hashtags #BlackPanther and #WakandaForever.
To help fans observe these events, the social media platform returned the use of the #BlackPanter emoji, “so fans can watch and talk about [Boseman’s] legacy together”.
Obama was among the many high-profile figures to pay tribute to Boseman, who played American baseball player Jackie Robinson in the film 42.
“Chadwick came to the White House to work with kids when he was playing Jackie Robinson,” Obama wrote.
“You could tell right away that he was blessed. To be young, gifted, and Black; to use that power to give them heroes to look up to; to do it all while in pain – what a use of his years.”
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