Lupita Nyong'o Didn't Want to Trip at the 2014 Oscars Because Jennifer Lawrence Had Done So a Year Prior

"It's not cute when you're the second person tripping up the stairs. That's lame," the actress told PEOPLE

<p>Getty(2)</p> Lupita Nyong


Lupita Nyong'o in 2014; Jennifer Lawrence in 2013

Lupita Nyong'o didn't want Oscars history to repeat itself.

While chatting exclusively with PEOPLE at the Paramount Pictures x Hollywood Confidential Celebrating Lupita Nyong'o event last month, the actress, 41, reflected on how nervous she was during the 2014 Academy Awards.

"I remember worrying about how much fabric I had to hold going up the steps," Nyong'o said. "I was like, 'I can't trip.' Jennifer Lawrence already did that the year before, so it's not cute when you're the second person tripping up the stairs. That's lame."

Reiterating that she "really just didn't want to trip," the star added, "I remember having that fear, and then I remember a throbbing sensation in my whole body. It was just so unbelievable."

Nyong'o took home the Best Supporting Actress prize for 12 Years a Slave during that awards ceremony, while Lawrence tripped after winning Best Actress for Silver Linings Playbook a year earlier in 2013.

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<p>Kevin Winter/Getty Images</p> Jennifer Lawrence falling at the 2013 Academy Awards.

Kevin Winter/Getty Images

Jennifer Lawrence falling at the 2013 Academy Awards.

Related: Lupita Nyong'o Says She's Ready to Be in a Rom-Com: 'Consider This My Open Application' (Exclusive)

Continuing to look back at her Academy Awards win, Nyong'o recalled how Emma Thompson offered her advice after her feat.

"Here I was winning it with my very first role. And I was like, ‘OK, where do I go from here?’ ” she said. "I'd heard a lot about the Oscar curse for Best Supporting Actress — a lot of people who won that then went on to not have such great projects after that — and [there was] the fear of falling off the map.”

However, Thompson, 65, was on hand to help, and the Bridget Jones star met up with Nyong'o while she was in London. “I spoke to her about my fears of failing. And she was the one who encouraged me to go and do what I wanted to do, which was a play on Broadway,” the actress explained.

Nyong’o recalled Thompson telling her, "You know what? You have to lead your life the way you see fit. Do not do what other people recommend. You have to really follow your own navigation system. And if that is what you feel will strengthen your craft and remind you of what you're good at, do that because you have the rest of your life to lead, and you can't do it according to other people's expectations."

<p>Arnold Turner/Getty Images</p> Lupita Nyong'o in June 2024

Arnold Turner/Getty Images

Lupita Nyong'o in June 2024

Related: Lupita Nyong'o Reveals the Advice She Got from Emma Thompson After She 'Panicked' Following Her 2014 Oscar Win (Exclusive)

Since her Oscar-winning role, Nyong'o has gone on to star in Us, Little Monsters and Black Panther: Wakanda Forever.

She also leads A Quiet Place: Day One, which was released in theaters in June.

During the Paramount Pictures x Hollywood Confidential event, which was at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Los Angeles, the actress' career was celebrated.

Created by TV & content producer Steve Jones, the Hollywood Confidential event series has served as a North Star to those dreaming of a career in Hollywood for the past 10 years.

The series features one-on-one conversations with the most powerful voices of color in entertainment.

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