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John Boyega Wins 'Rising Star' Award At BAFTAs 2016

Watch John Boyega win the 'Rising Star' award at the 2016 BAFTAs (British Academy Film Awards).


John Boyega picked up the Rising Star award at last night’s BAFTAs (British Academy Film Awards) in London. The award, chosen entirely by the public, pitted the Star Wars: The Force Awakens lead against Brie Larson (Room), Dakota Johnson (Fifty Shades Of Grey), Bel Powley (The Diary of a Teenage Girl) and Taron Egerton (Legend).

“I haven’t been doing this for a long time. It’s a fluke,” the actor began his acceptance speech. Though to be clear, Boyega is someone we’ve kept tabs on since well before his Star Wars days. In 2014, the Nigerian-Brit played the role of Ugwu in the film adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s Biafra War novel, Half of a Yellow Sun. At the time of its release, the film’s director, Biyi Bandele, spoke to us about his experience working with Boyega. “Through the shoot he did this thing that no actor I’ve ever directed had done before,” Bandele told us. “Constantly he’d come up to me and he’d say, Biyi, do I need to say this line? And I’d say what do you mean? He’d say I can show it. [laughs] Go back and watch it. The things he does with his face, originally they were lines.”

Prior to that, Boyega starred in the South London sci-fi comedy (and cult favorite) Attack The Block. He also made his Sundance debut in the Los Angeles-set drama Imperial Dreams, which may ultimately see a proper theatrical release.

All this to say we’re excited to see what the future has in store for the 23-year-old from Peckham.

During his acceptance speech, Boyega also went on to share his award with all the “young dreamers who are determined, who are hard working, and who are quite frankly amazing.”

And what's next for the star? Today he begins filming Star Wars: Episode VIII. The call-time was 6am.

Watch Boyega's entire BAFTAs acceptance speech below.

Better take on an amazing moment X

A photo posted by @john_boyega on

Photo by Meztli Yoalli Rodríguez

Dying Lagoons Reveal Mexico’s Environmental Racism

In the heart of a traditionally Black and Indigenous use area in Southwest Mexico, decades of environmental destruction now threatens the existence of these communities.

On an early morning in September 2017, in a little fishing village in the Pacific coast of Oaxaca, called Zapotalito, thousands of dead fish floated on the surface of the Chacahua-Pastoría lagoons. A 7.1-magnitude earthquake, which rattled Mexico City on September 19, was felt as far down as Zapotalito, and the very next morning, its Black, Indigenous and poor Mestizo residents, who depend on the area's handful of lagoons for food and commerce, woke up to an awful smell and that terrible scene of floating fish.

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