Actress Lupita Nyong’o believes she has a responsibility to promote ethnic diversity in Hollywood.
The 33-year-old became the first Kenyan-Mexican star to win an Academy Award when she was chosen as the recipient of the Best Actress Oscar in 2013 for her performance in “12 Years A Slave”.
Nyong’o accepts she is a position of power as one of the world’s most prominent actresses of colour and is prepared to use her fame to tackle the lack of opportunities in showbiz for ethnic stars and women.
“Films inspire people to feel differently. A lot more can be done. We can be more empathetic when we realise how much more alike we are than how different we are,” Nyong’o told theguardian.com.
Asked if she feels as though it is a burden to have to keep talking about diversity in the movie business, Nyong’o said: “You see, I don’t like to fight the reality. The reason it is so acute is because of the stage we are at.
“When we are talking about inclusion in entertainment, it’s because entertainment isn’t inclusive and, until such a time as that becomes the norm, then this work has to be done.
She added: “I feel an impetus to say something because this is a conversation that very directly affects me, and my career, and my role in the world. But I don’t belabour it.”