Lupita Nyong'o In Valentino For 'Interview' Magazine

Beauty & Style | Bené Viera | 01/29/2014 | 12:30 PM EST

Oscar nominee is haute in Valentino

Why is Lupita Nyong’o so flawless? It’s not fair. Not that we’re hating or anything. Quite the opposite (although we have faux resentment that we don’t wake up like this. Flawless). Hell, it’s about time a woman of her hue, a woman of her grace, a woman of her education background, a woman of her extraordinary talent become Hollywood’s it girl. Our only wish is that it’s not just a fleeting moment.

magazine is the latest to catch on to the rest of the country’s fascination with all things Lupita. It’s not the first or second or third time she’s served fierce slayage in a spread. Why would her shoot for Interview be any different?

The 30-year-old Yale School of Drama graduate donned a burgundy Valentino gown. The pleated long sleeved dress boasts a bold white shoulder. Her face looks natural with only a pop of red lip.

The Oscar nominee and SAG Award winner is much more than beauty. She told Interview there was great joy in filming 12 Years A Slave despite it's traumatizing moments.

“There was so much joy in the making of this film, despite the fact that it's about such a sad, traumatic experience," she told the magazine. "We all felt like we were part of something so real and so necessary. It was a joy to go on set every day and tell these real people's story. Doing this movie, I discovered that joy is not the negation of pain, but rather acknowledging the presence of pain and feeling happiness in spite of it."

The Mexican-born, Kenyan-raised daughter of a Kenyan politician was afraid to say she wanted to be an actress. For our own selfish reasons of being able to salivate over her at award shows, in films and in magazine spreads, we’re glad she did.

"When I was younger, I was almost too afraid to admit that I wanted to be an actor," recalls Nyong’o. "I didn't know any successful actors in Kenya, so I felt like I could get away with going to college to study film more easily than I could with saying, ‘I want to be an actor.' That's what I did. I knew that if I didn't try acting, that would be the one thing I would regret, so I decided to apply to acting schools. If I got in, I'd take it as a sign that I should pursue acting as a career. If I didn't get in, I was prepared to figure out some plan B. Luckily, I got in."

(Photo: GREGORY HARRIS for Interview Magazine, February 2014)

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