Out Of This World Deets On Lupita Nyong'o's Next Major Movie Role

Photo: Via Walt Disney Pictures/Lucasfilm.
On a scale of one to 10: How excited are we about Lupita Nyong'o's return to the silver screen? Eleven. Or possibly twelve — especially now that we're getting more info on the backstory of her upcoming Star Wars: The Force Awakens character, alien Maz Kanata.

Nyong'o is hidden in plain sight on the movie's theatrical poster — she's the little alien in giant goggles close to the center — and the history of the character she portrays has so far been equally wrapped up. But according to director J.J. Abrams, what audiences need to know about Maz is all in the eyes.

"I had some specific ideas about how she would work and what she would do," he told Entertainment Weekly. “I had this pitch about these goggles that she wore. Her eyes are an important aspect of her character, and you’ll see how it plays out.”

He added, “Her history is that she was a pirate for a long time. She’s lived over a thousand years. She’s had this watering hole for about a century, and it’s like another bar that you’d find in a corner of the Star Wars universe.”

Nyong'o has also kept the details about her character shrouded in a fair amount of mystery. (All the better to build anticipation.)

But what she has said so far has also circled back to talking about how there's importance in the eyes. “As an actor for films, your eyes are a lot of the way you communicate anyway,” Nyong’o also told the same outlet. “So it was definitely a gift to have that be the means to her magic as a motion-capture character.”

"I have lived long enough to see the same eyes in different people," the actress says, via voiceover, in a new teaser. "I see your eyes. I know your eyes.” We can't wait to dig deeper into this storyline. Watch out for Star Wars: The Force Awakens, in theaters December 18, 2015.

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