Lupita Nyong’o made a name for herself by not using her remarkable acting talent, but by helping to shift the Hollywood beauty paradigm, as she conquered countless red carpets with her dark skin, natural hair, and daring style. And on Oct. 15, after three years of work, Nyong’o published Sulwe, a children’s book aimed at shifting that same paradigm for children everywhere.
Currently promoting Sulwe, as well as an upcoming interview with Oprah on Saturday (a broadcast that will also feature Cynthia Erivo), Nyong’o took to Twitter on Thursday night for #AskLupita, a live thread in which the Oscar-winner fielded questions (some of which were from celebrity friends like Ciara, and hairstylist Vernon François). Holding court for an hour, Nyong’o discussed the inspiration and process behind creating Sulwe and even shared some behind-the-scenes secrets on her acclaimed performance in Us.
No confirmation yet on whether Sulwe will be making it to the big screen, but Nyong’o did confirm her love of Beyoncé’s “Brown Skin Girl,” and answered Oprah’s tweet asking what she knows for sure about being a dark-skinned girl.
“I know that brown-skinned girls are not a monolith,” Nyong’o artfully answered. “And another thing that I know for sure is that brown skin is ordinary. The extraordinary thing, the special thing is to be able to celebrate it, embrace it in spite of a world that might not value it. And that’s what Sulwe is about.”
Sounds like Nyong’o just sold us a book—one for every little brown-skinned child we know.