Lupita Nyong'o shares powerful story behind new children's book, 'Sulwe'

The Oscar award-winning actress' debut kids' book is about a young black girl who doesn’t think she's beautiful.
4:24 | 10/15/19

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Transcript for Lupita Nyong'o shares powerful story behind new children's book, 'Sulwe'
audience today. Our next guest is an Oscar award winning actress who you know from "Black panther" and "Star wars" and has written a beautiful children's book named "Sulwe." Please welcome the multitalented Lupita nyong'o. All right. This is beautiful. The illustration is just outstanding and it's partially a memoir about you and about how you dealt with who you are. Yeah, so when I was younger, I had trouble with -- accepting my skin. I grew up in Kenya around very many dark people, but I grew up with a lot of light skin on TV and in the books I read and it made me feel uncomfortable with my skin color. I had a younger sister that was born a lot lighter than me and she got cooed and told how pretty she was and it was in the omission of those words when it came to me that made me feel unworthy and so it took a while for me to find my stride and learn to love the skin I'm in and so I wrote this book to help little kids get there a little faster. Like these little kids that we have sitting before us right Yeah. She's got the biggest smile. Not just children but we are influenced by what we see on TV and what we see in books and that and you were influenced by that. Some of my favorite books were "Cinderella" and "Thumbelina" and "Beauty and the beast" and these were all women with light skin and blond hair and so I thought that in order to make it into the pages of books, you had to be light so, in fact, one much the first times I drew my family I drew them with light skin. I used the cream colored crayons and not the dark ones because I had never seen -- I just didn't see that in books so I didn't think that we belonged in books. Wow. So, again, I wrote this to give dark-skinned kids a chance to live in the world of imagination and magic. And they really, really do. Your beautiful family is here. I met them in the elevator. Your mom. Your sister and they're all so incredibly proud of. You yeah, they are. It shows. Lupita, I remember 2014, that luncheon, the essence Hollywood black women in Hollywood and that speech you gave and, you know, people thought then that you should write a book but it was actually "Black panther" after that that you thought about doing it. At the time after I gave that speech what happened was lots of people wanted to create that speech into a children's book but I just didn't think it would make an interesting children's it's not fun and so after "Black panther," you know, "Black panther" was a movie that was imaginative and aspirational and dealt with serious issues but in a fly and fun way and so that's when I had my aha moment and I was like, yes, this is the way I would like colorism to be experienced. I want for kids to love the book when they're younger and then grow up to understand it later. But I want them to enjoy the adventure that sulwe goes on. Sulwe means star. Okay. In the 45 seconds we have remaining, I remember the last time you were with us in Atlanta talking to a group of beautiful women there. What is your message for these young girls here. Well, Dr. Seuss, one of my favorite quotes says today you are you. That is truer than true. There's no one alive that is your than you. So be the best you you can be. Ah! Just like that. We should say vashti, the illustrator was terrific. She's super talented. It was a great collaboration and Lupita's book is available now. Everyone here is going home with

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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