A war of words has erupted between Kenyans and Nigerians on Twitter and the bone of contention is why Lupita Nyong’o was picked to play a Nigerian character in a new movie. The Kenyan-born star actress was chosen by American movie giant WarnerMedia Entertainment to play role of a Nigerian character in the movie Adaptation of Chimamanda Adichie’s Americanah.
WarnerMedia’s decision to give the Oscar award-winning Nyong’o the role infuriated Nigerians who on Sunday, September 15, trooped to Twitter to express their displeasure and demand answers on why a Kenyan actress will be playing a Nigerian character.
“They need to stop doing this. We have fine actresses from Nigeria who can play these roles better. Lupita is good but try other people who are Nigerians. She’ is going to be told or taught how to speak half-baked Igbo instead of a real Nigerian?” posed one tweep by username Almost a Billionaire.
They need to stop doing this. We have fine actresses from Nigeria who can play these roles better. Lupita is good but try other people who are Nigerians. What, she’s going to be told or taught how to speak Half-baked Igbo instead of A real Nigerian? https://t.co/lo0eoPSjwL
— ALMOST A BILLIONAIRE (@MeetHajaar) September 14, 2019
Below are more reactions from the aggrieved Nigerians who were not amused by the latest news from the Hollywood industry.
When you can – You would go for the best..!!
Lupita playing that role will suffer one thing and one thing alone..
The “Igbo” accent..
But if we can put that aside..we would all agree that she will interpret the character perfectly..
So the question is..
Na accent be problem..?
— Duke Edoho (@droayung) September 14, 2019
And as one would expect, Kenyan netizens who are not new to Twitter wars with citizens of other countries came to the defence of Lupita, complete with a hashtag someonetellNigeria.
Nigerians should sit 👇 down. Any actor can star in any role. Let Lupita be.
— Lord Abraham Mutai (@ItsMutai) September 15, 2019
If you’re Nigerian and complaining about Lupita playing Ifemelu, firstly stop embarrassing yourself.
Secondly, keep that same energy when Nigerians + Nigerians in diaspora play other IDs.
This feels like a tit for tat more than anything….because of recent years. Grow up.
— Kovie Biakolo (@koviebiakolo) September 14, 2019
Nigerians be like, "We want a Nigerian to act as a Nigerian!" @Lupita_Nyongo role in 'Americanah' is ACTING – which means she doesn't have to be a Nigerian with Igbo accent
Nigerians, who can you offer better than Lupita? pic.twitter.com/7ydzqeaTSO
— Cнгispine (@tinegachris) September 15, 2019
Several Nigerians complaining of one @Lupita_Nyongo acting an igbo accent, but when SA is complaining of several Nigerians taking their "jobs" in their motherland SA, it's when Nigerians remember that we are all Africans. THE ANIMAL FARM
— Rumplestiltskin (@AsumaEnock) September 15, 2019
— #Hustler Nation Has Won (@Joe_munene1) September 15, 2019
— Thuo Kimani Githuku (@thuogithuku) September 15, 2019
When Beyonce decided to release an album with an East African theme and unfairly failed to feature E.A artists but Nigerians, the Kenyans swallowed the bitter pills and moved on with life. It's time the Igbos did the same over HBO's decision to pick OUR LUPITA over their girls. pic.twitter.com/0SXqdChV6G
— Local Kenyan Man, Author. (@author_sakwah) September 15, 2019
The adaptation of Chimamanda’s Americanah is a 10-episode TV series based on the Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s best-selling novel.
It is a story of a Nigerian-born woman who left home for America and her extraordinary experiences with love, adversity and self-discovery.