As revealed in the June issue of Vanity Fair, Lupita Nyong’o will play a motion-capture character named Maz Kanata in Star Wars: The Force Awakens. Per the magazine, Kanata is a pirate with no allegiances to either the Resistance (the new name for the Rebel Alliance) or the First Order (the new Empire).
That Nyong’o is playing a digital character has long been rumored online. As far back as October of last year, sites were reporting that the Oscar-winning star’s secret role might be of the performance-capture variety. After the most recent Force Awakens trailer was released, Uproxx senior writer Mike Ryan also speculated that Nyong’o’s character was in possession of Luke Skywalker’s lightsaber.
The other bits of news confirmed by Vanity Fair:Adam Driver is indeed playing Kylo Ren, the film’s villain, while Gwendoline Christie stars as Captain Phasma, aka the chrome Stromtrooper. New photos of Driver, Nyong’o and co-star Oscar Isaac are available over at Vanity Fair’s website. There’s also a behind-the-scenes video of the magazine’s photo shoot which can be watched below.