Lupita Nyong’o is part of two famous social media moments in Oscars history: the “best photo ever” selfie (which has, let’s say, not aged well) and The Slap. The 12 Years a Slave and Black Panther actress was caught on camera reacting to Will Smith yelling at and slapping Chris Rock for not keeping his wife’s name out of his f*cking mouth.
“Once the moment was over,” Nyong’o told the Hollywood Reporter about seating behind Smith, “I realized, ‘Oh my God, there’s no way all this transpired and I’m not in the shot.’ I knew as soon as it was over that I was going to be a meme.” As for her feelings on the slap, she said, “I don’t want to add any more fuel to that thing, quite frankly.” Good call.
But Nyong’o did discuss Black Panther: Wakanda Forever, where she reprises her role as Nakia. “He affected how I move in the world,” she said about Chadwick Boseman, who died in 2020. “But that’s the thing about Chadwick. Chadwick wasn’t trying to have everyone be like him. What he inspired was you to be your best self. So how I’m going to lead a set is nowhere near — I’m not that person. I’m not Chadwick at all. I’ll never be.”
Black Panther: Wakanda Forever opens on November 11.
(Via the Hollywood Reporter)