Belfast Telegraph

Lupita: I yearned for lighter skin

Lupita Nyong'o has admitted that when she was young she wished her black skin would become lighter.

The actress - who is nominated for an Oscar for 12 Years A Slave - delivered an emotional speech while accepting her honour for best breakout performance at Essence magazine's seventh annual Women in Hollywood luncheon.

She confessed that she tried to bargain with God to see a change in her skin tone, but it was not until she discovered supermodel Alek Wek that she began to believe in her own beauty.

Essence also honoured Cheryl Boone Isaacs, the first black president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences, Ava DuVernay, the first black woman to win best director at the Sundance Film Festival, and the champions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964.

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