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5 Marvelous Roles For Lupita Nyong’o

Lupita Nyong'o

Few actors have years as good as the one Lupita Nyong’o is currently having right now. Fresh off of an Academy Award for her critically acclaimed performance in Best Picture winner 12 Years a Slave, Nyong’o has just signed on for a role in Star Wars: Episode VII. Not only does Nyong’o’s involvement in J.J. Abrams’ Star Wars sequel up the expectations for that film considerably, it also means that Nyong’o is going to use her momentum and time in the spotlight to defy convention by traveling to genres dominated by white male actors. This is a very welcome change.

This would also be a welcome change for the Marvel Cinematic Universe, should Nyong’o continue to balance her filmography with both dramatic and blockbuster roles. So far, there have been very few women of color in Marvel’s big screen output; Zoe Saldana’s Gamora is the only one that comes to mind. That’s a shame considering how progressive the MCU films have been regarding men of color and female roles. Here’s hoping that Marvel’s planning on fixing that, and that they’ll have Lupita Nyong’o put her talents to work in one of these roles.

Misty Knight

1 Misty

As Marvel’s first black female protagonist, the bionic-armed detective Misty Knight deserves much more attention than she’s gotten in her nearly forty years of existence. As one half of the crime fighting duo the Daughters of the Dragon, Misty Knight has kept New York City’s streets clean and fought alongside heroes like Iron Fist and Luke Cage. This role would allow for Nyong’o to play a different type of strong character, one built as much on witty attitude as on confidence. With Luke Cage and Iron Fist getting Netflix series of their own, Marvel Studios should consider setting one of their episodes aside to act as a pilot for a Misty Knight series.


2 Medusa

Rumors have been circling for years now about the Inhumans place in the MCU and the possibilities for their eventual feature film. If that happens, Lupita Nyong’o would be a perfect fit for the Inhuman queen Medusa. As the matriarch of the Inhuman Royal Family, whoever plays Medusa has to exude both warmth and regality; those are two qualities are so essential to Nyong’o, they come across in every word she speaks. And if anyone can pull off the kinda goofy ability of having dozens of feet of prehensile hair, it’s the incredibly powerful Nyong’o.


3 Moondragon

There are way more women in the Guardians of the Galaxy comics than the upcoming feature film would lead movie goers to believe, and we really hope that a few more of them make their way into future Marvel movies. Like the rest of the Guardians, Moondragon has a bit of a complicated history; she’s an Earth woman that was raised on Saturn’s moon Titan, where she honed her considerable mental powers under the guidance of monks. Also, she was initially brought to Titan by Thanos’ father, Mentor. Oh, and, yeah, she’s also the daughter of the tortured human spirit that resides within Drax the Destroyer. So…she’s a bit complicated. But if there’s one actress that can cut through all of those complications and make the character feel fully formed and independent, it’s Nyong’o. And unlike Medusa, Moondragon sports a hairstyle much more similar to Lupita’s everyday look.


4 Spectrum

The Avengers need more women, and they need Captain Marvel – the original female Captain Marvel. No disrespect to Carol Danvers, who absolutely one-hundred million percent should show up ASAP, but we can’t forget Monica Rambeau. She’s gone by a number of other code names, like Spectrum, but one thing has remained constant: she’s a willful, take-no-crap, bad-ass with the guts to lead the Avengers and the powers to back up every single one of her decisions. She’s a powerhouse of a character, one that demands respect from even someone like Tony Stark. This feels like the Marvel character Lupita was born to play.


5 Storm

Well, except for Storm. We know this is Fox territory, and if Fox really wants to one-up Marvel Studios, they would quit wasting time and cast Nyong’o as Storm before anyone else fills up her post-Episode VII schedule. With X-Men: Apocalypse set in the 1980s and producers and writers already hinting that we’ll see younger versions of familiar characters, bringing in Nyong’o as ‘80s punk Storm just seems like a no-brainer. Since she was raised in Kenya, exactly where Professor X first recruited Storm forty years ago, Lupita’s natural speaking voice just sounds like Storm; you hear her talk, and you finally realize what Halle Berry was trying to do in 2000’s X-Men. She can play strong, she can play regal, she can play complicated and messy – she can do everything an actress needs to do to play Storm right. Just watch any of Nyong’o’s many acceptance speeches; the woman knows how to command attention. This isn’t a Marvel Studios role, no, but it’s one that needs to happen.


  • TopTen Jesus

    She would be a good younger Storm, nice call.

  • Richard Casey

    I dunno, last time a black woman won an oscar and became a super hero, we got Halle Berry as Storm….

  • blue

    Moondragon or Storm

  • steven

    I would HATE to see her wasted on a Fox X-Men Storm role, but break out the mohawk! She’s even Kenyan!

    Misty Knight almost needs someone who is from the Bronx.

    Why not a black woman as Captain Marvel? She’s definitely got the chops!

  • mfactor

    Hell no to Storm and Spectrum.

  • James Moore

    the female Black Panther, T’challa’s sister Shuri

  • sotp_seamus

    Even worse, we got Halle Berry as Catwoman.

  • Afronerd Radio

    Have we forgotten that she would be perfect as T’Challa’s sister, Shuri? And that character is in the current timeline of the Black Panther mythology.

  • AzureXCrimson

    Shot in the dark, but why not play Vixen? I know she’s DC but she would be amazing!

  • thecocoacritic

    Storm all the way!

  • Scratch89

    I will march in the streets to get Lupita cast as Ororo.

  • Scratch89

    Lupita > Halle

  • marcochap

    She would be perfect as Storm, both african, both young and beautiful, she has the perfect looks, but it would have to be a substantial role in this movie. None of this stuff where Wolverine is 75% of the movie and everyone else is in the back. Otherwise a small role in an ensemble cast would be beneath her (yes even in X-Men)

  • Imraith Nimphais

    My first choice would definitely be Shuri. Then perhaps Vixen. Absolutely no to Storm. While she is phenomenally beauty-full (and so too is Halle) visually she (much like Halle) seems inherently wrong for the part. Of course, this is all dependent on having a damn good director and a bloody good script.

  • XandGunn

    I’ve always thought she would make a great Vixen (a DC Comics hero), but these choices especially Moondragon and Storm would be AMAZING.

  • blu girl

    Exactly. No comparison if you’ve actually seen Nyong’o act.

  • uatu13

    I think we have the next spider-man on our hands! LOL

  • Brad Barnes

    Hey AzureXCrimson, I completely agree that Vixen would be a perfect fit for Lupita Nyong’o. Vixen’s civilian identity is also as a high fashion model, so Nyong’o’s Miu Miu contract would pay off. Vixen actually chaired the Justice League in issues #34-36 and did a better job at it than did Black Canary. Vixen is comfortable ordering Wonder Woman in the field and is good friends with Superman, and what other DC character can claim that? Vixen was created in 1981, which is around when Nyong’o was born in Mexico City, and had her own miniseries in 2009, sp there’s plenty of material to draw from. I believe that Nyong’o could make Vixen into a franchise character just as Hugh Jackman has done with Wolverine and Robert Downey Jr. has done with Iron Man. So glad that you see the same possibilities for Nyong’o as Vixen that I do!

  • Hypestyles

    stop being prejudiced…

  • Hypestyles

    Hopefully she will be approached with a role that fits her high quality acting pedigree– she should be a protagonist for sure. I’m not sure “young storm” is the option unless Fox totally discards Berry as Ororo. But, we’ll see.

  • AzureXCrimson

    I’m super glad that someone else sees the great potential that the actor and character can bring to the table. I would LOVE for the JL movie to take flight and hopefully give characters like Vixen a chance to be given some exposure and get people more interested in comics. Storm IMO, is going to be the obvious choice. But as much as I love Nyong’o, I feel that Halle has already given her take on the character, and yes Lupita would do an amazing interpretation of Storm but I much prefer for her to take on the reigns of a new character that hasn’t been seen on the big screen. She herself can mold and breath life to Vixen and make it her own without always being compared. A fan can only dream, either way I’m all for Lupita to sport some spandex.

  • Kyle McGrath

    Shuri? That would be almost as much of a waste of talent as Idris Elba as Heimdall. Why would you want her to basically step in as back ground set dressing? Give her a real role, with a character that actually matters.

  • 010010101110100011

    Come on, the best role for her is the Black Panther! Shuri, T’Challa’s sister is the current Black Panther and ruler of all Wakanda. Putting her in that role, and introducing Wakanda with her, and her struggles as the Queen and first female Black Panter makes sense. Especially as it highlights why Wakanda will suddenly be entering into the outside world? This also would be one of the few times where fan boys can’t complain about a change in their white male universe as this is the current continuity of the Black Panther. T’Challa is not the Black Panter except as the king of the Dead. Shuri is the best role for this talented woman.

  • Bruno Diaz

    I jumped on here specifically to say Lupita as Vixen all day everyday!

  • Tom Lewis

    Somebody doesn’t like somebody’s
    acting, and it has to be race for you.
    That says far more about you than the
    poster you’re accusing, you bigot.

  • Richard Casey

    Yeah, it’s almost like i was making A FUCKING JOKE IDIOT. jesus, are you THAT irony deficient that you can’t see that? Further more, it’s a joke about actors who get Oscars, great actors who deserving win Oscars, then lose their minds and become terrible actors.

  • Cylon

    You’ve already seen this film that you know Shuri is a background set dressing in it?

  • PretenderNx01

    It’s a funny joke, though not entirely accurate as X-Men came out in 2000 and Monster’s Ball was after that, where Hale won and Oscar. So she won and Oscar then reprised her role as Storm in X2 (where she wasn’t as bad) then did Catwoman. :p

  • Joe S. Walker

    He really shits these things out, doesn’t he?

  • Kyle McGrath

    I must have used my Batman level detective prowess to surmise that an ancillary comic character who doesn’t matter, doesn’t show up in any comics, have any relevance to any story lines and barely even has any relevance in Black Panther’s back story wouldn’t get a lot to do on screen.

  • CurtissPope

    I don’t see why she could not play Wasp (model,fashion designer,style maven,hero). I think its art imitating life. in the real world the most beautiful models are women of color anyway.I enjoy Brett’s writing , but I’m disappointed he did not look further outside the color lines, and actually think about roles that are top notch(deserving of an Oscar winner) not obscure/non-mainstream characters (besides Storm) that have paltry followings before writing this article.

  • CeeCeeCee

    Yeah the “here’s a handful of black b list characters, plus storm” angle is a bit lame.

  • Shokdiesel

    She also would be a great Wasp. Not the ditzy Janet from “Avengers: Earth’s Mightiest Heroes,” but a character with depth. But I could understand if Marvel wants to go the Ultimates route and make her Asian American. I mean, Asians are allowed to be superheroes, too!

  • Mr0011011 .

    They REALLY need to get her for Storm! She would be fantastic as her. If the film is focused equally, with significant time on Storm, Jean and Scott, then all will be well. Scrap Wolverine! Just stop with him being in them all, it’s annoying and unjustified, not to mention he is a total movie hog.

  • Jmtmw

    I am not sure she would really be right for Medusa with her red hair and all, but she is the perfect Storm, I think she would be better than Hale was