Lupita Nyong’o in Running for ‘Star Wars’ Lead, Collaborates with Chimamanda Adichie

Edna Owusu-Ansah March 21, 2014

lupita nyong'o star warsMultiple award-winning actress Lupita Nyong’o (pictured) is said to be auditioning for the part of female lead in “Star Wars Revival Episode VII.” The Kenyan actress has reportedly been in talks with the film’s director, JJ Abrams, according to the Hollywood Reporter.

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Nyong’o reportedly met with Abrams just before winning an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for “12 Years a Slave.” As for what role Nyong’o would play, some speculate that she could be a descendant of “Obi-Wan Kenobi.”

Five actors are reported to be in the running for a young male lead role in Episode VII. “Downtown Abbey’s Ed Speleers, “Attack the Block’s John Boyega, and “Breaking Bad’s Jesse Plemons as well as stage specialists Matthew James Thomas and Ray Fisher are said to be up for the part of a young Jedi apprentice who will take on Adam Driver‘s previously announced “Darth Vader-like” villain.

Episode VII is expected to center on the iconic trio of “Luke Skywalker,” “Princess Leia,” and “Han Solo” portrayed by Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, and Harrison Ford, though younger newcomers will likely move center stage for future installments. Abrams’s film is reportedly shooting from mid-May to September this year, mainly at London’s Pinewood studios, for a Christmas 2015 release. It will be the first “Star Wars” movie to emerge since Disney’s billion-dollar purchase of all rights to the long-running space saga.

Another Opportunity

In another development, award-winning Nigerian author Chimamanda  Chimamanda Adichie Adichie (pictured at right), has hinted at a future “collaboration” with Nyong’o.

Adichie gave the tip during an interview on entertainment web-series Arise Entertainment 360 published on YouTube Thursday.

According to Adichie, the collaboration would be for her 2013 novel, “Americanah.”

Watch Adichie’s interview here:


“I’m going to do the mysterious thing and say that Lupita might be making an announcement sometime soon — I don’t know. That announcement might be about “Americanah.” I don’t know,” she said coyly.

Adichie disclosed that Nyong’o was a very early fan of “Americanah.” “Before she was sort of well-known like she is now (…), she wrote me the loveliest e-mail, very long and passionate e-mail about ‘Americanah.'”

The critically acclaimed book, which was selected as one of the 10 Best Books of 2013 by the editors of the New York Times Book Review, is a kind of romance novel about race relations in America from the point of view of a Nigerian transplant. It also highlights the lifestyle of the new Nigerian middle-class, mostly “post-democracy returnees” from the United States and the United Kingdom.

On Friday, it won the National Books Critics Circle Award — one of the most prestigious literary prizes in the United States, according to the UK Guardian.

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Last Edited by:Sandra Appiah Updated: March 21, 2014


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