Lupita Nyong'o Auditioned for Star Wars Without Even Knowing It (and, Yes, Scored the Part)
The actress said that when she auditioned for the role of CGI character Maz Kanata in the new film in the iconic space franchise, she had no idea what the meeting was even for.
“I didn’t really know what I was auditioning for. I knew I was going in for J.J. [Abrams], but I was so busy,” she revealed Tuesday during an appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show.
Nyong’o, fresh off her Oscar win for 12 Years a Slave in 2014, said she ccepted an audition with the film’s director J.J. Abrams with only the knowledge that he was working on a “big movie.”
“I guess I thought I should find work, ya know,” the 32-year-old star joked, adding, “I was so busy, I was working with adrenaline so I went in and out. I barely remember that audition, and then two months later [Abrams] called me.”
In The Force Awakens, Nyong’o plays a short-statured orange pirate.
The star told DeGeneres that she simply read from a substitute script during the audition, and it wasn’t until later (while she was vacationing in Morocco) that she found out that she had, not only, gotten the part, but also, that it was in Star Wars.
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The motion-capture role required Nyong’o to wear tiny “dots” on her face to correctly record her expressions – over 125 of them, to be exact.
The plastic sticker-like dots took between 45 minutes to two-and-a-half hours to apply, she told DeGeneres, and covered her teeth and lips. So what happened when the star needed a snack or to quench her thirst?
As there was no time to reapply, Nyong’o simply incorporated the dots into her diet.
She said, “I would just eat the dots!”
Star Wars: The Force Awakens opens in theaters nationwide on Dec. 18.