The Daily Grind Video

When it comes to Lupita Nyong’o, too much is never enough – especially editorial shoots featuring the 12 Years a Slave actress. After landing features and covers on just about every major glossy magazine in the last 2-3 months, it’s an absolute fact that the Mexican-born Kenyan is the woman of the moment this awards season. But outside of her role, who is she really?

New York Magazine smartly tapped the beauty to cover their latest issue, and in the corresponding interview, they navigate the careful world of Lupita, who seems to be a public relation rep’s dream, carefully selecting every word to talk about her rise from a Brooklyn girl with a roommate, to one of the biggest movie stars of the moment.

Oh, and the editorial shots? We can barely deal with how stunning they are. Check out the snaps from the issue below and some snippets from the interview.

On why her family moved from Kenya to Mexico:

“His car was found on the ferry in the town he lived in with a pair of his shoes and no sign of him,” Nyong’o says. Worried that he might be the next one to go missing, her father relocated, figuring that “no one would look for a Kenyan in Mexico.” Nyong’o was born shortly thereafter and, in the Kenyan tradition of naming a child after what’s happening at the time of his or her birth, was given the name Lupita, a diminutive of Guadalupe. “Every single laundromat, grocery store, everything is called Lupita in Mexico.”

On her move from Kenya: 

“I thrive on structure,” she says. “I find my freedom in structure. It was very hard to adjust to an individualistic and very liberal system. I mean, my upbringing, I would iron my clothes every night. I would plan what I wore the night before, and then I would iron it. That’s just the way my mom raised us. Then I got to Hampshire, where clothing is sometimes optional and all this kind of thing. I was mortified.”

On learning about her Oscar nomination:

“I had a very good cry with my best friend, and then we had a dance party, just me and him.”

On advice given to her by Ralph Fiennes about acting: 

“He asked me what I wanted to do with my life, and I very timidly admitted that I was interested in being an actor. He sighed and said, ‘If there’s something else that you want to do, do that. Only act if you feel you can’t live without it.’ It wasn’t what I wanted to hear, but it was the thing I needed to hear.”

On her first run-in with the paparazzi: 

 “I don’t know who they were waiting for, but they definitely chased me down, which is a startling, disturbing experience. I did not expect it. I went into flight mode.”

Head over to New York Magazine for more, because if you’re anything like us, there is no such things as too much Lupita.


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