Having won an Oscar for her role as Patsey in 12 Years a Slave, Lupita Nyong’o has likened award season and, more specifically, the red carpet, to a war zone. The 31-year-old star was talking to Vogue as part of her well-documented cover feature.

Lupita Nyong'oLuptia Nyong'o thinks the red carpet is a war zone. Luckily, this one's blue

“Everyone said, 'Brace yourself, Lupita! Keep a granola bar in that clutch of yours!'” she explained. “I didn't really understand what they meant, and it was only once it was past that I realized that my body had been holding on by a thread to get through this very intense experience. Nothing can prepare you for awards season,” she added.  “'The red carpet feels like a war zone, except you cannot fly or fight; you just have to stand there and take it,” she explained.

For Nyong’o, who was relatively unknown before her breakthrough, Oscar-winning role, fame crept up on her as if from nowhere

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''It just feels like the entertainment industry exploded into my life,” she revealed. “People who seemed so distant all of a sudden were right in front of me and recognizing me - before I recognized them!”

Nyong’o has now signed on to a number of excited new projects, including a voice role in Jon Favreau's take on Disney's The Jungle, a role in Star Wars: Episode VII and a co-producer/starring role in an adaptation of the Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie book Americanah. 

"It's a wonderful opportunity to be working in these fantastical realms. They're worlds away from 12 Years A Slave, that's for sure - but that kind of diversity is what dreams are made of,” she said of her new projects.