Feb. 17 (UPI) -- Nikita Pearl Waligwa, the young actress who starred in Disney's "Queen of Katwe," has died at the age of 15, according to the Ugandan school where she attended.
Waligwa died of a brain tumor, Gayaza High School announced in a statement on Twitter Sunday.
"Fare thee well, Nikita Pearl Waliwa. You were a darling to many and we have lost you to brain tumor at such a tender age," the school said. "... Rest in Perfect Peace, dear."
Fare thee well Nikita Pearl Waligwa. You were a darling to many and we have lost you to brain tumor at such a tender age. Nikita was in S.3. Rest in Perfect Peace dear pic.twitter.com/ny8I9YAjsQ— Gayaza High School (@gayazahigh) February 16, 2020
In the 2016 feature film directed by Mira Nair about the true-life story of chess prodigy Phiona Mutsei, Waliwa earned her only film credit staring as the protagonist's friend, Gloria.
The film also starred Oscar winner Lupita Nyong'o as Phiona's mother.
Nyong'o confirmed Waligwa's death on Instagram.
"It is with great sadness that I post about the passing of Nikita Waligwa, the sweet, warm, talented girl whom I worked with on the film 'Queen of Katwe,'" she said in a statement.
Nyong'o said Waligwa played the role with vibrancy but in real life she had an "enormous challenge" of battling brain cancer.
"May she truly rest in [peace]," Nyong'o said. "May it be well with her soul."
David Oyelowo, who also starred in the film, said Waligwa was "a ball of light" not only in her role as Gloria but in life.
"Her battle with a brain tumor was humbling to witness," he said in a statement. "Her light will live on."