Chiwetel Ejiofor

Chiwetel Ejiofor

A British-Nigerian Actor and Filmmaker


10 July 1977

Early Life and Education

Chiwetel Umeadi Ejiofor, born on July 10, 1977, in Forest Gate, London, is a renowned British-Nigerian actor and filmmaker. Ejiofor was born to upper-middle-class Nigerian parents of Igbo descent. His father, Arinze, was a doctor, and his mother, Obiajulu, was a pharmacist. Growing up in London, Ejiofor discovered his passion for acting at a young age. He participated in school plays at Dulwich Prep London and continued his involvement in theater during his time at Dulwich College. He later joined the National Youth Theatre and further honed his acting skills.


11 July 1997

Early Career and Breakthrough

Ejiofor's breakthrough in the entertainment industry came when he was cast by acclaimed director Steven Spielberg in the film "Amistad" (1997) at the age of 19. This opportunity paved the way for his successful career in both film and theater. Ejiofor portrayed various memorable characters in films such as "Dirty Pretty Things" (2002), "Kinky Boots" (2005), "Serenity" (2005), "12 Years a Slave" (2013), and "The Martian" (2015), to name a few.


11 July 2023

Accolades and Recognition

For his remarkable performance in "12 Years a Slave," Ejiofor received widespread acclaim and earned nominations for prestigious awards, including an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, and a BAFTA Award for Best Actor. Throughout his career, he has also received the BAFTA Orange Rising Star Award (2006), two Golden Globe Award nominations, and the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor for his role in "Othello" (2008). In 2008, he was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) by Queen Elizabeth II for his contributions to the arts.


11 July 2023

Personal Life and Humanitarian Work

Outside of his acting endeavors, Ejiofor maintains close friendships with fellow British actors, including Benedict Cumberbatch, Idris Elba, and Andrew Lincoln. He is known for his philanthropic efforts and was honored with a Global Promise Award by The GEANCO Foundation in 2015 for his charity work in Nigeria. Ejiofor has also actively participated in raising awareness of the global refugee crisis through his involvement in the United Nations' refugee agency UNHCR's #WithRefugees campaign.

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