She is the new Golden Girl of Hollywood and a knighted fashion killer. Every well respected house of the most exquisite wearable art has chomped at the bits to dress her during award season. Now that is it post season I don’t suspect the chomping to follow suite. Her face. Absent of the European features that often signal beauty, instead is graced with West African features of the unapologetic and perfect kind. Shockingly beautiful. It’s actually shocking. Her eyes are not blue, green or light brown but dark and deep. Her skin is not alabaster but chocolate, the rich kind that looks like it might melt. Her hair is not straight, not permed but shaved and simple au naturale, a la Grace Jones except it belongs solely to Lupita Nyong’o. She is not a hyper sexualized female presence, yet the world can’t contain their gaze for reasons that go beyond the unambitious settling for sexy.
Indeed Hollywood has gone replete and unreplenished without her. And now that she has arrived we are all beside ourselves. While Hollywood celebrates her charm and talent, Lupita has quickly become a movement amongst African American women. The little girls that played with their white Barbie dolls grew into women and watched Sunday night on March 2nd as she floated down the aisle to collect her Oscar. The dress, the speech, and the crème de la crème of Hollywood giving her a standing ovation all made for something of a religious experience.
The character of Patsy in McQueen’s 12 Years a Slave, was Lupita’s first role out of Yale’s School of Drama. Not only has she gained recognition on a large scale following her role but she’s been catapulted into the Hollywood elite. Her Oscar for best supporting actress in a film is a testament to her talent.
Yes, we love a story of the triumphant hero (or heroin). Yet more than that, perhaps it is because she isn’t another blond haired bombshell that the world has celebrated her existence and brilliance in movies. In Hollywood, where the birth of misrepresented beauty came to be, Lupita is the correction.
May she continue to keep us all captivated.
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