Lupita Nyong’o Wore a Gown Inspired by Her Warrior Character to the Black Panther Premiere

“Purple reign.”

On Monday, Lupita Nyong’o attended the world premiere of Black Panther at the Dolby Theater in Hollywood in a purple dress inspired by her onscreen warrior alter ego. The Oscar winner matched the walkway in a vivid purple custom Versace gown with a long, flowing train, a deep V-neck, and a spiky metallic armor-like overlay embroidered on the bodice that wrapped around her neck, shoulders, and waist, and was dotted with coordinating purple jewels. Nyong’o wore a delicate gold headband around her head and pulled the rest of her hair back into a tall, narrow bun. She accessorized with plum lipstick, a Versace clutch, Giuseppe Zanotti shoes, and Beladora vintage rings and earrings in gold, to match her gown’s textured bodice.

“Purple Reign. #BlackPanther #WelcomeToWakanda,” N’yongo captioned a series of photos on Instagram of her in her gorgeous gown. The actress plays Nakia, a “war dog” spy for the fictional African nation of Wakanda and the main love interest of Wakanda’s ruler T’Challa (AKA the Black Panther), in Marvel’s newest movie,

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Micaela Erlanger, the star’s longtime stylist, spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about Nyong’o’s warrior glam look. “We found out there was a purple carpet after we had chosen the dress, but it was kind of a perfect reason to go with the gown; I think it’s a new addition to the Lupita rainbow!” she said. “There’s definitely a nod to her warrior character Nakia here, without being costumey. It’s a really glamorous take on our vision and it’s very fierce, certainly.”

Earlier this month, Nyong’o spoke to THR about what made her sign onto Black Panther before she had even read the script. “We were creating an aspirational world where an African people are in charge of their own destiny,” she said. “And that really appealed to me and had the little girl inside me jumping for joy. To just have African people, black people, at the center of that narrative is so exciting.”

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