Meet The « 12 Years A Slave » Actress No One Knows, But Everyone Will Be Talking About
octobre 2013 | Faits de société | Cinéma/TV | États-Unis
Source : BuzzFeed


Kenyan native Lupita Nyong’o makes her stunning feature film debut in director Steve McQueen’s highly acclaimed chronicle of American slavery. How she got to this point is itself a Hollywood-friendly tale that is equal parts perseverance and great good fortune.

There are so many great actors teeming within 12 Years a Slave that singling out just one of them almost feels selfish. To start, Chiwetel Ejiofor (Salt, American Gangster) gives the performance of his career as Solomon Northup, a free black man living in New York in the mid-19th century who was kidnapped into slavery and wrote the titular memoir that served as the basis for the film. Michael Fassbender (Prometheus, Shame), meanwhile, is also winning raves for playing the dangerously cruel plantation owner Edwin Epps who ends up as Solomon’s master and tormentor. And then there’s Sarah Paulson, Paul Giamatti, Benedict Cumberbatch, Paul Dano, Alfre Woodard, Garret Dillahunt, Michael Kenneth Williams, and Brad Pitt, all stunning actors with fabulous résumés, contributing superlative performances under the direction of Steve McQueen (Shame, Hunger) from a screenplay by John Ridley (Red Tails).

There is one actor, however, who you have not heard of before this film, and who you will almost certainly be talking about after you see it. And her name is Lupita Nyong’o.

She plays Patsey, another slave on Epps’ plantation, who endures the worst kind of scrutiny from both Epps, who is obsessed with her, and his wife (played by Paulson), who detests her. It would be an enormously demanding role for any actress. But for Nyong’o, it not only marks her feature film debut, it’s also a role the Kenyan native landed three weeks before graduating from the Yale School of Drama last year, and one that could earn her a trip to the Dolby Theatre for the Academy Awards next March.

Not bad for someone who has wanted to act « from when I was an itty bitty girl, » as she puts it while settled comfortably on a hotel suite couch. How Nyong’o was able to make her childhood dream a reality is itself a Hollywood-friendly tale that is equal parts perseverance and great good fortune.

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