Nyong’o broke down her thoughts on inclusion and what it’s like working alongside impactful directors like Ryan Coogler and Jordan Peele.
In the prestigious bunch, Nyong’o was joined by Renée Zellweger, Laura Dern, Scarlett Johansson, Jennifer Lopez, and Awkwafina. During the hourlong conversation set aside for the actresses Lupita discussed her rise in the entertainment industry she discussed inclusion, her career and more.
Known by many for her breakout in Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, Nyong’o has also starred in the critically acclaimed Broadway show Eclipsed alongside Danai Gurira. She also played a poignant role in Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther movie which went on to win a plethora of awards. During the “Actress Roundtable” she made it a point to declare that diversity and inclusion should not be a “trend.”
On working with Jordan Peele, Steve McQueen, Mira Nair and Ryan Coogler:
“It’s definitely not a calculated thing. These are all directors who have offered me the most interesting roles. And I’ve taken them. I haven’t really thought about the demographic of the director I’ve been working with. This #MeToo time, this Time’s Up time in the industry, is about allowing for equitable representation. And because I am a black woman, I am a beneficiary of that movement in the work that I’ve been able to do. I’m very grateful to have come into the industry at the time that I have because I am benefiting from the efforts of a lot of other women who have come before me, other black women who have had it a lot rougher than I have.”
On Jordan Peele’s Us:
“So like with Jordan in the horror genre, not often do you have black characters in the fore. So he is revolutionizing that genre — that black people don’t die first in his films. And [race] is really not the point. What is the point is that it’s an examination of class and privilege. The family that we are following is representational of the all-American family. And that you can relate to that person just as much as I related to Fräulein Maria in The Sound of Music. That it is possible that we can see ourselves in the people who are different from us, from other cultures, other creeds.”
To read the entire feature, head to the The Hollywood Reporter. Watch the Lupita Nyong’o interview below.