Lupita Nyong’o Breaks Silence On Janelle Monae Romance Rumors: ‘She Has Magnetism’

The 'Black Panther' star opened up about her closeness with the 'Dirty Computer' R&B star, and said she didn't mind the romance rumors.

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Lupita Nyong’o revealed that she didn’t mind when fans speculated that she and singer Janelle Monae were dating in the early years of their friendship in a new profile about Janelle, 37, in Rolling StoneLupita, 40, admitted that she wasn’t bothered by the rumors, and that she wasn’t surprised that people thought there may have been a romance between her and The Age of Pleasure singer.

Lupita revealed how she and Janelle first met at the Met Gala in 2014. The actress was a rising star after winning an Academy Award for 12 Years A Slave, and she said that the world of celebrity was still “extremely new” and “unbelievable” when Janelle greeted her. “[Janelle ]came up to me and just gave me the realest hug. I think we may have swayed to the music. She was just like, ‘I’m so proud of you, and just thank you for being you,” she told Rolling Stone.

Janelle and Lupita’s friendship began when they met at the 2014 Met Gala. (Mediapunch/Shutterstock)

When reflecting on the period of time that rumors about Janelle and Lupita circulated, the Oscar-winner explained what she thought people were picking up on. “She has magnetism that they were obviously picking up on. She is that enigmatic,” she explained. “People are curious about enigmatic people. I was not surprised. And I don’t mind being associated with her in any capacity.”

Even though Lupita spoke about her friendship with Janelle, she said that there’s definitely parts of the singer that she hasn’t seen, even if they have a lot of trust for one another. “Just because you’re a close friend of hers doesn’t mean you get to know everything about her,” she said.

Lupita and Janelle smile for a photo at the 2016 VMAs. (Mediapunch/Shutterstock)

While she and Janelle weren’t an item, Lupita has been dating musician Selema Masekela since December 2022. Janelle was most recently tied to Tessa Thompson, but they split up in 2018. The Dirty Computer singer has publicly identified as pansexual and she came out as non-binary during an appearance on Red Table Talk in April 2022. She’s said that her pronouns are both she/her and they/them.