Did You Know? : Five Facts About Lupita Nyong’o

Lupita Amondi Nyong’o is a Kenyan-Mexican actress born March 1, 1983. She is the daughter of Kenyan politician Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o.

Lupita was born in Mexico City, where her father worked as a teacher at the time. She was raised in Kenya from the age of one and attended college in the United States, earning a bachelor’s degree in film and theatre 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 television series Shuga (2009–2012).

In 2009, she wrote, produced and directed the documentary In My Genes.
Lupita has starred in many other award winning movies.

Other than acting movies, here are somethings you probably didn’t know about Lupita.

Did you know Nyong’o speaks four different languages? A Brooklyn, New York resident, Lupita is a fluent speaker of Swahili, Spanish, Luo, and English.

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Did you also know Lupita is a writer?
In October 2017, Nyong’o wrote an op-ed for The New York Times, in which she revealed that Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein sexually harassed her twice in 2011, while she was a student at Yale. She vowed that she would never work with Weinstein, hence her declining a role in Southpaw (2015).

Nyong’o also wrote about her commitment to work with women directors or male feminist directors, who do not abuse their powers. Her op-ed was part of a collection of stories done by The New York Times and The New Yorker that won the 2018 Pulitzer Prize for Public Service.

Did you know Lupita holds a Master’s degree?

Nyong’o attended St. Mary’s School in Nairobi, where she received an IB Diploma in 2001. She moved to the United States for college, graduating from Hampshire College with a degree in film and theatre studies.
She pursued a master’s degree in acting from the Yale School of Drama.

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Soon after her graduation, she had her first feature film role as Patsey in Steve McQueen’s biographical period drama 12 Years a Slave (2013), for which she received critical acclaim and won several awards, including the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She became the first Kenyan and Mexican actress to win an Academy Award.

The actress is also an author, did you know?

Nyong’o made her writing debut with a book entitled Sulwe (2019), which is published by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers. Slew – Luo for “star” is the story of a five-year-old Kenyan girl, who has the darkest complexion in her family, for which Nyong’o drew from her own childhood experiences. The book became a New York Times Best-Seller. Sulwe was selected for the 2020 Illustrator Honor at the Coretta Scott King Awards and won Outstanding Literary Work – Children at the 2020 NAACP Image Awards.

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Lupita is a Michael Kors ambassador, did you know that?

In September 2019, Nyong’o became an ambassador for Michael Kors’ “Watch Hunger Stop” campaign.
In addition to acting, Nyong’o supports historic preservation. She 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.

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