Lupita Nyong’o graces the cover of Vogue for the third time and poses for a luminous photo shoot in her family’s village in her native Kenya. The Oscar winner opens up about European standards of beauty, her new movie, ‘Queen of Katwe’ and other topics.
The 34-year-old actress and Yale Drama School alum has gone on to a stellar career — including a role in ‘Star Wars: The Force Awakens’ — after breakthrough Oscar, SAG, Globe etc winning performance in Steve McQueen’s ’12 Years a Slave.’ She’s also become a style icon, as in that breakthrough year for her 2014 she graced the awards season red carpet with one stunning fashion after another, and has continued ever since.
The fashion world has embraced her — she even nabbed the coveted ‘People magazine’s Most Beautiful Woman’ and now, as noted, she covers the American edition of Vogue for the third time. Legendary fashion photographer Mario Testino photographs her — and members of her family — in Kenya.
Lupita Nyong’o, who’s also become the face of Lacome, opens up about European standards of beauty and said, “I came home from college in the early two-thousands and saw ads on TV with a girl who can’t get a job. She uses this product. She gets her skin lighter. She gets the job.”
She added, “The lording of lighter skin is a common thing growing up in Nairobi. Being called ‘black mamba.’ The slow burn of recognizing something else is better than you.”
She credited supermodel Alek Wek for changing “how dark people saw themselves.” She went on to say, “That I could do the same in a way for somebody somewhere is amazing. She added, “There is no point in getting your picture taken if it doesn’t move somebody.”
Lupita Nyong’o also opened up about her latest movie, ‘Queen of Katwe’ a biopic in which she portrays Harriet Mutesi, the mother of Phiona Mutesi, a Ugandan chess prodigy from Katwe, based on Tim Crothers’ book ‘The Queen of Katwe: A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl’s Dream of Becoming a Grandmaster. And she revealed that for her it’s more than just bringing to the big screen a heroine whose achievements might have gone unnoticed, but that there’s a deeper mission here beyond finding plumb roles here and there for herself.
She said, “”There are certain cards that have been dealt me that I take on. I want to create opportunities for other people of color because I’m fortunate enough to have a platform to do that. That is why Eclipsed and even Queen of Katwe are so important, to change the narrative, offer a new lens on African identity.”
You can see Lupita Nyong’o’s Vogue magazine cover, photos and videos below. See more excerpts from the interview and the rest of the photos here.
Pictures: PR Photos