Lupita Nyong’o Bows Out of 12 Years a Slave Italian Premiere

Other commitments prevented the breakthrough star from attending the 18th annual Capri Hollywood International Film Festival.

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Steve McQueen is flanked by Lupita Nyong'o and Chiwetel Ejiofor at a premiere of 12 Years a Slave on December 11, 2013 in Paris.

FRANCOIS GUILLOT/AFP/Getty Images

In the aftermath of controversy surrounding Italian posters of 12 Years a Slave that highlighted white supporting actors Brad Pitt and Michael Fassbender instead of black star Chiwetel Ejiofor, it was announced Friday that Lupita Nyong’o would not attend the premiere in Capri, reports show.

As a result, the 18th annual Capri Hollywood International Film Festival kicked off Friday without the film’s breakthrough star, according to the Hollywood Reporter. It was unclear why.

"Due to other commitments that prevented her from going, [Nyong'o's] reps let [the Capri festival] know over two weeks ago that she could no longer go," a spokeswoman for Lionsgate, whose subsidiary Summit is the film's sales agent, told the Hollywood Reporter. (Fox Searchlight distributed the title in the U.S.)

Additionally, Lionsgate told the festival that none of the cast members were available to attend.

Earlier this month, Italian posters of the film, featuring large images of Pitt and Fassbender, incited a vociferous outcry and charges of racism. But they were immediately recalled, and the Italian distributor, BIM Distribuzione, issued an apology for the "inappropriate materials."

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