Lupita Nyong’o was born in Mexico, raised in Kenya and educated in the US.
Nyong’o is a film director of Kenyan descent. Nyong’o made her American film debut in Steve McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave as Patsey. Nyong’o was cast in 12 Years a Slave immediately after her graduation from Yale in 2012.
Nyong’o was nominated for a Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress and two Screen Actors Guild Awards including Best Supporting Actress for 12 Years a Slave film.
She is a graduate of the Yale University School of Drama Acting programme.
After graduating from Hampshire College with a degree in film and theatre studies, Nyong’o worked on the production crew of many films, including Fernando Meirelles’s The Constant Gardener.
She later featured in the 2008 short film East River, directed by Marc Grey and shot in Brooklyn, New York.
Nyong’o returned to Kenya in 2008 and starred in the Kenyan television series Shuga.
In 2009, she wrote, directed, and produced the documentary – In My Genes, about the treatment of Kenya’s albino population, which played at several film festivals.
In 2014 she was chosen as one of the faces for Miu Miu’s Spring 2014 campaign, alongside Elizabeth Olsen, Elle Fanning and Beth Heathcote.
Isis Nyong’o is her cousin, and she was named one of Africa’s most powerful women by Forbes magazine in 2012.