Oscar Actors: Nyong’o, Lupita–Background, Career, Awards, Cumulative Advantage

Lupita Nyong’o Career Summary:

Lupita Amondi Nyong’o, born March 1, 1983, is a Kenyan-Mexican actress and author.

The daughter of Kenyan politician Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o, she was born in Mexico City, where her father was teaching, and was raised in Kenya.

Hampshire College

She earned a bachelor’s degree in film and theater studies from Hampshire College.

Nyong’o began her career in Hollywood as a production assistant. In 2008, she made her acting debut with the short film East River and subsequently returned to Kenya to star in the TV series “Shuga” (2009–2012).

In 2009, she wrote, produced and directed the documentary “In My Genes.” She then pursued a master’s degree in acting from the Yale School of Drama. After graduation, she had her first feature film role as Patsey in Steve McQueen’s historical drama “12 Years a Slave” (2013), for which she received critical acclaim and won the Best Supporting Actress Oscar. She became the first Kenyan and Mexican actress to win an Oscar.

Broadway Debut: Tony Nomination

Nyong’o made her Broadway debut as a teenage orphan in the play “Eclipsed” (2015), for which she was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play. She went on to perform as Maz Kanata in the Star Wars sequel trilogy (2015–2019) and a voice role as Raksha in “The Jungle Book” (2016).

Nyong’o’s career progressed with her role as Nakia in the Marvel Cinematic Universe superhero “Black Panther” (2018) and her starring role in Jordan Peele’s critically acclaimed horror film Us (2019).

Nyong’o supports historic preservation and is vocal about preventing sexual harassment and working for women’s and animal rights. In 2014, she was named the most beautiful woman by People. Nyong’o has also written a children’s book named Sulwe (2019), which became a number one New York Times Best-Seller. She was named among Africa’s “50 Most Powerful Women” by Forbes in 2020.