Birthdate: January 19, 2007
Birthplace: Gambella Region, Ethiopia
Lidya Jewett is a fast-rising young actor whose life began in an orphanage in the Gambella region of Ethiopia. Her adoptive Floridian parents encouraged her as a child model in commercials and print ads in the Miami and Orlando areas, starting at six years old. Jewett was then cast in TV series, including the Nickelodeon-produced WITS Academy (2015) and See Dad Run (2015).
Jewett had her big-screen debut in co-writer/director Theodore Melfi’s historical drama for 20th Century Fox, Hidden Figures (2016), co-starring Taraji P. Henson, Octavia Spencer, Janelle Monae, Kevin Costner, Kirsten Dunst, and Jim Parsons, and grossing nearly ten times $25 million costs, and nominated for three Oscars including Best Picture.
Lidya Jewett was then cast in a supporting role in co-writer/director Stephen Chbosky’s adaptation of R. J. Palacio’s best-seller, Wonder (2017), starring Julia Roberts, Owen Wilson, and Jacob Tremblay, and scoring one Oscar nomination. Although Jewett portrayed Young Nakia in Ryan Coogler’s megahit for Marvel, Black Panther (2018), her role was uncredited. Jewett joined the cast of the Jennifer Yuh Nelson-directed fantasy-horror drama, The Darkest Minds (2018), with Amandla Stenberg, Mandy Moore, Gwendoline Christie, Bradley Whitford, and Harris Dickinson.
Jewett was cast--after a role in the Elissa Down-directed Netflix movie, Feel the Beat (2020)--in her first voice role for an animated feature, co-writer/director Kirk DeMicco’s musical-comedy for Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Animation, Vivo (2021), co-starring Lin-Manuel Miranda, Ynairaly Simo, Juan de Marcos, Gloria Estefan, Brian Tyree Henry, and Zoe Saldana.
Jewett had her first co-starring role in the David Yarovesky-directed horror movie for Netflix, Nightbooks (2021), co-starring Winslow Fegley and Krysten Ritter. Jewett continued her run of Netflix streaming features with a recurring role as Nancy in the kids-oriented Ivy & Bean (2022), Ivy & Bean: Doomed to Dance (2022), and Ivy & Bean: The Ghost That Had to Go (2022).
Lydia Jewett had her first major co-starring role as the possessed girl, Angela, in The Exorcist: Believer (2023), produced by Blumhouse/Morgan Creek and released by Universal Pictures, and co-starring Leslie Odom Jr., Olivia Marcum, Ellen Burstyn, and Ann Dowd under co-writer David Gordon Green’s direction.
Lydia Jewett was born in Ethiopia and lived her first three years in the orphanage, Hannah’s Hope, run by the non-profit organization, All God’s Children International, in Ethiopia’s Gambella region near the Sudanese border. At age four, Jewett was adopted by Dale and Kim Jewett and raised with their family based in South Florida. Jewett has one older sister, Isabelle, and two older brothers, Connor and Maclain. Jewett’s family moved to the Los Angeles area in the 2014-2015 period so that Jewett could develop her acting career in film and television. Jewett was a middle and high school student at the Dwight Global Online School. Jewett’s estimated net worth is $2-3 million.
Reader: Lidya Jewett is an enthusiastic reader, noting that her favorite book is We Were Liars by E. Lockhart, and her favorite authors are Laura Hillenbrand, J.K. Rowling, J.R.R. Tolkien, and Maureen Johnson.
Social Media Fan: Jewett enjoys posting on social media with her dog. Jewett is reported to have over 61,000 followers on TikTok.
Music Maven: Lidya Jewett has learned piano and singing.
Lost-and-Found Role: Jewett was cast as Young Nakia by director Ryan Coogler in Black Panther (2016), and then had to bow out of the role due to a scheduling and logistical conflict with her recurring role in NBC’s Good Girls (2018-2021); but the scheduling was resolved, allowing Jewett to appear in Black Panther.