‘Little Monsters’: Lupita Nyong’o Talks About Being a Superhero in the Zombie Comedy

Lupita Nyong'o attends the "Little Monsters" Premiere 2019 SXSW
Lupita Nyong’o attends the “Little Monsters” Premiere 2019 SXSW | Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images for SXSW

Little Monsters tells a story of a teacher named Miss Caroline (Lupita Nyong’o) taking her kindergarten class on a field trip to a petting zoo. An uncle of one of the students named Dave (Alexander England) goes on the trip to help her, but both of them have the tough task of keeping the children safe when a zombie outbreak reaches the zoo.

The Cheat Sheet talked to director, Abe Forsythe and star, Lupita Nyong’o at the Little Monsters SXSW premiere on March 9. This is what they had to say about the inspiration behind the zombie comedy and more.

Director, Abe Forsythe said Little Monsters isn’t really a zombie movie

Abe Forsythe and Lupita Nyong'o
Abe Forsythe and Lupita Nyong’o | Getty Images/ Matt Winkelmeyer

Director, Abe Forsythe explained how the movie isn’t really a zombie movie. “They’re a metaphor for a thing very personal for me,” he told The Cheat Sheet. He said he picked the creature because he knows he wouldn’t have to really explain it to the audience who is already familiar with zombies.

Forsythe revealed that he once went on an excursion with his son’s class with his son’s teacher. There were 25 5-year-old kids and something happened that stopped it. After the incident, the father continued to think about it.

He said “the idea just popped into my head about what would we do if that was a zombie ahead of us? How would we stop all of these kids from being attacked, but also how would you stop their minds from being corrupted and f*cked up by everything that was happening around them as well too?”

The director continued, “so it was just that idea that sparked” then “a whole bunch of the personal stuff just kind of poured out of me and turned to what it is.”

Nyong’o is the one who plays a teacher in the director’s story. She talked about what the experience was like acting out such extreme situations with children onscreen.

Lupita Nyong’o said being a teacher is the work of a superhero

Nyong’o has some experience with being in a superhero movie given she was in Black Panther. She talked about working like a much more realistic superhero for this movie on and off the screen.

“Well, it was a lot of fun,” the actress told The Cheat Sheet when asked about working with such a young cast. “It was also a lot of hard work.” She went on to talk about the difficulties of working with a cast that age.

“When you working with 5-year-olds it takes a lot of patience and a lot of gymnastics in keeping their attention,” the Oscar winner explained. “But the cast and the crew was very good that they kind of helped to manage things and I think really it’s a reflection of what teachers do every day.”

She added, “I just had to do it for a few months, but there’s people who make a living out of taking care of little minds and ushering them into the world and it’s the work of a superhero. I’ll say that having tried it for a little bit [laughs.]”

Josh Gad also stars in the movie as Teddy McGiggle. Little Monsters is set to be released in theaters later this year.

Read more: The Force Is Strong With Lupita Nyong’o and Gwendoline Christie

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