It seems like forever since we’ve seen Lupita Nyong’o since her Oscar-winning debut performance in 12 Years a Slave in 2013 and that’s probably because her only screen appearances since then have been voice work in The Jungle Book and Star Wars: The Force Awakens and a brief and forgettable turn as a flight attendant in the Liam Neeson thriller Non-Stop in 2014. She spent this year starring on Broadway in Eclipsed, which earned her a Tony nomination last week. Queen of Katwe marks her big return to the silver screen, albeit in a supporting role. She detailed her career choices in an essay penned for Lenny.
The film stars another newcomer primed for a breakout performance, Madina Nalwanga as Phiona, a young girl from the Ugandan slums who discovers a masterful skill in the game of chess. The true story, directed by award-winning film maker Mira Nair (Monsoon Wedding, Salaam Bombay!) also stars David Oyelowo (Selma). Nyong’o plays Harriet, Phiona’s mother.
Queen of Katwe will be released by Disney on September 23rd.