Lupita Amondi Nyong’o is the actress who played the iconic character of Maz Kanata in Star Wars. She was born in Mexico City on March 1, 1983 and is a Kenyan actress and model with Mexican citizenship.
Her first major role as an actress is in the award-winning 12 Years a Slave film (2013). Her interpretation of Patsey has received critical acclaim and numerous awards including the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress and the SAG Award for Best Supporting Film Actress. Nyong’o is the first Kenyan and Mexican actress to win an Academy Award. She later appeared in the hit Disney Star Wars: The Force Awakens (2015), The Jungle Book (2016), and Queen of Katwe (2016).
In April 2014, People magazine named her “The most beautiful woman in the world“. In 2015 she made her Broadway debut with the title role in the theater show Eclipsed, for which she received a Tony Award nomination in 2016.
Lupita Nyong’o was born in Mexico because her father, an ambassador, had temporarily moved for work, but immediately returned to her parents’ country of origin, Kenya. As a teenager, she returns to Mexico to study Spanish. She graduated from the United States (University of Hampshire, Massachusetts) in Film and Theater Studies. She achieved notoriety only twenty-six years thanks to the creation of her first documentary, In My Genes, of which she is a director, producer and creator. She previously worked as a production assistant and actress.
In My Genes is a 2009 film that addresses the discrimination suffered by albinos in Kenya. She won the Best Documentary Award at the Five College Student Film Festival, a Massachusetts university consortium. She was also selected for the New York African Film Festival, the Zanzibar International Film Festival, the Kenyan Film Festival, and was screened in Mexico, Ghana and Utah.
In 2013 she took part in the film 12 Years a Slave, alongside Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Brad Pitt. The film, which won the Oscar for Best Film 2014 and the Toronto International Film Festival in 2013, allows Lupita to win an Oscar, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Critics’ Choice Movie Award as best supporting actress and to receive nominations among the most prestigious awards such as the Golden Globe and the Bafta. In 2014 she was one of the testimonials of the Miu Miu spring / summer campaign, and was chosen as a new face by the Lancôme.
In May 2015, her presence is confirmed in the film Star Wars: The Force Awakens, in which plays the role of the wise space pirate Maz Kanata (interpreted through motion capture).
In 2014 Nyong’o joined the cast of dubbers in the live-action remake of Disney’s The Jungle Book, in which she played the role of the adoptive mother of the protagonist Mowgli, the wolf Raksha. The film, released in 2016, is directed by Jon Favreau, and Nyong’o supports, among the other dubbers of the film, famous film personalities such as the comedian Bill Murray, Idris Elba and the Oscar awards Ben Kingsley and Christopher Walken. In 2017 and 2018 is among the protagonists of the Pirelli Calendar, in the first year appears together with Penelope Cruz, Jessica Chastain and many other Hollywood actresses. In 2018 is photographed by Tim Walker, along with other famous people, reviving the story Alice in Wonderland.
In Black Panther (2018) Lupita Nyong’o played the role of Nakia, T’Challa’s former lover and a War Dog, an undercover spy for Wakanda placed in other countries to complete missions.