Chadwick Boseman Honored by Robert Downey Jr., Don Cheadle During MTV Movie & TV Awards Special

Chadwick Boseman
Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images

Chadwick Boseman

The 'Black Panther' star was posthumously named "Hero for the Ages" during the special. He "truly embodied what it meant to be a superhero," Downey said.

Robert Downey Jr. and Don Cheadle paid tribute to fellow Marvel star Chadwick Boseman during the MTV Movie & TV Awards: Greatest of All Time, which aired Sunday night.

Boseman was posthumously named "Hero for the Ages" during the special. MTV said the award "honors a star whose heroism onscreen was only surpassed by the true hero they were offscreen." The Black Panther star died in August at age 43 after battling colon cancer.

"His energy and intensity was undeniable," Downey said during the show, adding that Boseman "truly embodied what it meant to be a superhero."

Cheadle added: "Each time he stepped on the set, he inspired and influenced everyone there, and with every role he created a new legion of fans. He had an incredible power to unify people in their love for his work and their respect for him as a person. The way he lived his life united people behind a higher purpose, and that will be his legacy."

Cheadle also noted that while Boseman is best known for his role as Black Panther, the actor also made his mark portraying real-life luminaries Thurgood Marshall (in Marshall), James Brown (in Get on Up) and Jackie Robinson (in 42).

"Chadwick will forever be known as the Black Panther, but he also painted incredibly powerful portrayals of iconic and influential real men who changed the world," Cheadle said, adding: "He brought humanity and truth to the portrayal of people that felt larger than life, and he did it in a way that honored their memories."

Downey also noted that Boseman did many philanthropic works and helped out others also battling cancer.

Watch their tribute below.

The special, which aired in lieu of the MTV Movie & TV Awards due to the pandemic, honored several other stars, including Kevin Bacon, Drew Barrymore, Kristen Bell, Selma Blair, Jamie Lee Curtis, Gal Gadot, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Kevin Hart, Adam Sandler, Jason Segel and Cobra Kai star William Zabka.

An announcement at the end of the telecast revealed that the traditional awards show will return in May.