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Lupita Nyong’o Talks About Her “Disturbing, Startling” Experience With Fame: “They Chased Me Down!”

Submitted by on February 14, 2014 – 10:26 amNo Comment

Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Lupita Nyong’o tickles us to pink perfection in the latest issue of New York Magazine.

The 12 Years a Slave actress showed off her pristine style, rocking gorgeous frocks by Giorgio Armani (above), Miu Miu, Chanel, Balenciaga, and a red hot Stella McCartney number on the cover. But the 30-year-old Oscar-nominated actress, who moved with her family from Kenya to Mexico, wasn’t always so adventurous with her wardrobe and found it especially hard to dress when she moved to the United States.

“I find my freedom in structure,” she said of attending the Yale School Of Drama. ” It was very hard to adjust to an individualistic and very liberal system. I mean, my upbringing, I would iron my clothes every night. I would plan what I wore the night before, and then I would iron it. That’s just the way my mom raised us. Then I got to Hampshire, where clothing is sometimes optional and all this kind of thing. I was mortified.”

Lupita has also had a hard time adjusting to her newfound Hollywood “It Girl” status.

“I’ve been in a bubble,” she says of dealing with the fame. “I haven’t been out much. I haven’t gotten used to being recognized. I was blissfully ignorant of the magnitude of the project I was in or what it was going to mean for the world.”

The paparazzi have been an especially difficult part of the job for Lupita. “I don’t know who they were waiting for, but they definitely chased me down, which is a startling, disturbing experience,” she says. “I did not expect it. I went into flight mode.”

But despite all the ups and downs, Lupita wouldn’t trade in her job for any other in the world. “[Actor Ralph Fiennes] asked me what I wanted to do with my life, and I very timidly admitted that I was interested in being an actor,” she said. “He sighed and said, ‘If there’s something else that you want to do, do that. Only act if you feel you can’t live without it.’ It wasn’t what I wanted to hear, but it was the thing I needed to hear.”

To read Lupita’s entire interview, head over to New York Magazine now and check out the gallery below.

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