Lupita Amondi Nyong’o was born March 1, 1983 in Mexico City, Mexico, to Kenyan parents, Dorothy Ogada Buyu and Peter Anyang’ Nyong’o. Her father, a senator, was then a visiting lecturer in political science. She was raised in Kenya. At age 16, her parents sent her back to Mexico for seven months to learn Spanish. She read film studies at Hampshire College, Massachusetts and, after working as a production assistant on several films, graduated from the Yale School of Drama’s acting program. In 2013, she impressed cinema audiences in her film debut, as brutalized slave Patsey in acclaimed director Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave (2013). She was also the lead in MTV’s award-winning drama series, Shuga (2009), appeared in the thriller Non-Stop (2014) and had roles in the big-budget films Star Wars: Episode VII – The Force Awakens (2015) and The Jungle Book (2016). Lupita’s stage credits include playing “Perdita” in “The Winter’s Tale”, (Yale Repertory Theater), “Sonya” in “Uncle Vanya”, “Katherine” in “The Taming of the Shrew”, as well as being in the original production of Michael Mitnick’s “Elijah”. Lupita played the female lead, Nakia, in the 2018 superhero film Black Panther (2018).
Nyong’o will next star in Simon Kinberg’s ensemble spy-thriller The 355 (2022), alongside Jessica Chastain, Penélope Cruz, Fan Bingbing, and Diane Kruger. She is developing a television series based on Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novel Americanah, which she will produce and star in. She will produce and star in Born a Crime, a film adaptation of Trevor Noah’s memoir of the same name, in which she will portray Noah’s mother, Patricia. She will be reuniting with director Abe Forsythe and the creative team behind the horror comedy film Little Monsters for a starring role in a science fiction comedy film. Nyong’o will reprise the role of Nakia in Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, the sequel to the original Black Panther film, scheduled for release in July 2022. She will also team with Natalie Portman to produce and star in a television adaptation of Laura Lippman’s novel Lady in the Lake for Apple TV+ In February 2021, Nyong’o announced that she will produce an animated musical based on her number-one best-selling children’s book, Sulwe (2019), for Netflix. She will also reprise her narration role in Serengeti (2019).