By Tambay A. Obenson, Shadow and Act


Movie poster for “In My Genes”

The first feature-length documentary by talented Kenyan director Lupita Nyong’o, In My Genes, follows eight individual Kenyans who have one thing in common: they were born with albinism, a genetic condition that causes a lack of pigmentation.

In many parts of Africa, including Kenya, it is a condition that marginalizes, stereotypes, and even endangers those who have it. Though highly visible in a society that is predominantly black, the reality of living with albinism is invisible to most. Through her intimate portraits, Ms. Nyong’o lets us see their challenges, their humanity, and their everyday triumphs.

[In addition to her filmmaking, Ms. Nyong’o has] been cast in quite a meaty role in Steve McQueen’s Twelve Years A Slave. [Produced by Brad Pitt, this movie in production also stars Alfre Woodard, Paul Giamatti, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and other well-known actors.]

Lupita Nyong'o

Lupita Nyong’o, filmmaker and actor.

Read more about the filmmaker and the film In My Genes here.

12 yrs a Slave

Cover of Solomon Northup’s memoir, “Twelve Years a Slave,” upon which the new movie of the same name is based.

Read more about Twelve Years a Slave here.