How tall is Lupita Nyong’o? Lupita Nyong’o stands 5 feet, 5 inches tall, according to her IMDB biography. The “12 Years a Slave” star is no giant, in other words, but in terms of her acting prowess and growing celebrity, she’s a force to be reckoned with, and come March 2, she just might bag an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.

The question “how tall is Lupita Nyong’o?” is one many moviegoers might be asking in the wake of “12 Years a Slave,” the much-hyped film in which the 30-year-old (and 5-foot, 5-inch) big-screen newcomer plays Patsy. While Nyong’o wasn’t a complete unknown—she’d appeared in numerous plays while studying at the Yale Drama School and done a stint on the MTV Africa show “Shuga”—there’s no doubt that “12 Years a Slave” marks her breakout performance.

“How tall is Lupita Nyong’o?” is just one of the many things film fanatics smitten with this rising star are likely asking in the lead-up to the 86th Academy Awards, and the further you delve into the actress’ life story, the more fascinating a character she becomes. Lupita was born in Mexico City, Mexico, in 1983, but she moved soon after to Kenya, where her father was and is a prominent politician. (Once the minister of medical services, he’s now a member of the Kenyan Senate.) She wound up attending college in the United States, earning a degree in film and theater from Hampshire College in Massachusetts before heading to Yale. Interestingly, she’d never considered a career in the dramatic arts, and it wasn’t until her Hampshire years that she fell hard for acting and decided to make it her life’s work.

How tall is Lupita Nyong’o compared to an Oscar statue? The gold trophy she might pick up for her work in “12 Years a Slave” at the 2014 Academy Awards stands 13.5 inches, though in terms of what it might mean for her career, it’s a pretty big deal.

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