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Chiwetel Ejiofor

Ejiofor at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival premiere of Redbelt
Born 10 July 1974 (1974-07-10) (age 35)
London, England, UK
Occupation Actor
Years active 1995–present

Chiwetel Ejiofor, OBE (pronounced /tʃuːwɛtəl ɛdʒəfɔː/; born 10 July 1974) is a British actor. In 2006 he received 2 Golden Globe nominations for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture and Best Performance by an Actor in a Mini-Series.[1]

Contents

Early years

Ejiofor was born in London's Forest Gate to Nigerian parents who belonged to the Igbo ethnic group.[2] His father, Arinze, was a doctor, and his mother, Obiajulu, was a pharmacist.[3 ][4] He began acting in school plays at the age of thirteen at Dulwich College and joined the National Youth Theatre and played the title role in Othello at the Bloomsbury Theatre in September 1995, and again at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow in 1996 when he starred opposite Rachael Stirling, who played Desdemona.

Career

Ejiofor made his film debut in the television movie Deadly Voyage in 1996. He went on to become a prominent stage actor in London. In Steven Spielberg's Amistad, he gave memorable support to Djimon Hounsou's Cinque as interpreter Ens. James Covey. In 1999, he appeared in the British film G:MT. In 2000, he starred in Blue/Orange at the Royal National Theatre (Cottesloe stage), and later at the Duchess Theatre. That same year, his performance as Romeo in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet was nominated for the Ian Charleson Award. Ejiofor was awarded the Jack Tinker Award for Most Promising Newcomer at the 2000 Critics' Circle Theatre Awards. For his performance in Blue/Orange, he received the 2000 London Evening Standard Theatre Award for Outstanding Newcomer and a 2001 nomination for the Laurence Olivier Theatre Award Best Supporting Actor.

Ejiofor had his first leading film role in the 2002's Dirty Pretty Things, for which he won a British Independent Film Award for best actor. He also starred in a 2003 BBC adaptation of Chaucer's The Knight's Tale. He starred alongside Hilary Swank in 2004's Red Dust, portraying the fictional politician Alex Mpondo of post-apartheid South Africa. He played the central part of Prince Alamayou in Peter Spafford's radio play I was a stranger, broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 17 May 2004. He also received acclaim for his performance as a complex antagonist The Operative in the 2005 movie Serenity. Ejiofor played a revolutionary in the highly acclaimed 2006 film Children of Men. His singing and acting performance in Kinky Boots received Golden Globe and British Independent Film Award nominations. He was also nominated for the 2006 BAFTA Rising Star Award, which recognises emerging British film talent. Ejiofor's performance in Tsunami: The Aftermath received a 2007 Golden Globe nomination for best actor in a miniseries or film made for TV.

In 2007, he starred opposite Don Cheadle in Talk to Me,[5] a film based on the true story about Ralph "Petey" Greene (played by Cheadle), an African American radio personality in the '60s and '70s. He performed on stage in The Seagull at the Royal Court Theatre from 18 January to 17 March 2007.

He has roles in four films in 2007 and 2008: Toussaint, American Gangster, Tonight at Noon and Redbelt. Ejiofor is considered one of the leading candidates to play T'Challa in the proposed Black Panther movie based on the Marvel comic books character.

In 2007, he reprised his role as Othello at the Donmar Warehouse, alongside Kelly Reilly as Desdemona, and Ewan McGregor as Iago. The production received favorable reviews, with particularly strong praise for Ejiofor. "Chiwetel Ejiofor produces one of the most memorable performances of Othello in recent years".[6] He was awarded the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor for his performance.

He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2008 Birthday Honours.[7] In the same year, he made his directorial debut in the short film, Slapper, which he also wrote, based on an idea by editor/director Yusuf Pirhasan.

He portrayed White House Scientific Advisor Adrian Helmsley in 2012, a disaster film directed by Roland Emmerich and released November 13, 2009.

Selected works

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Filmography

Year Film Role Notes Awards and nominations
1996 Deadly Voyage Ebow
1997 Amistad Ens. James Covey
1999 G:MT - Greenwich Mean Time Rix
2002 Dirty Pretty Things Okwe 2002 Evening Standard British Film Award, best actor

2003 San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
2004 American Black Film Festival Best Performance by an Actor
2004 Black Reel Award for Best Actor in a Motion Picture

2003 Twelfth Night, or What You Will Orsino TV movie
Love Actually Peter storyline: Juliette, Peter and Mark Nomination: 2004 Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards Best Ensemble Acting
2004 She Hate Me Frank Wills
Red Dust Alex Mpondo
Melinda and Melinda Ellis
2005 Four Brothers Victor Sweet Nomination: 2006 Black Reel Awards Best Ensemble
Serenity The Operative Nomination: 2006 Black Reel Awards Best Supporting Actor
Slow Burn Ty Trippin
Kinky Boots Lola Nominations:

2006 Golden Globe Awards Best Actor – Musical or Comedy
2007 Black Reel Awards Best Supporting Actor

2006 Inside Man Detective Bill Mitchell
Children of Men Luke Nomination: 2007 Black Reel Awards Best Supporting Actor
Tsunami: The Aftermath Ian Carter TV mini-series Nominations:

2006 Golden Globe Awards Best Actor in a (Mini)Series or TV Film
2007 Image Awards Outstanding Actor in a (Mini)Series, TV Film or Dramatic Special

2006 BAFTA Awards Rising Star Award
2007 Talk to Me Dewey Hughes 2008 Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male

Nomination: 2008 Image Awards Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture

American Gangster Huey Lucas Nomination: 2008: Screen Actors Guild Awards Outstanding Cast in a Motion Picture
2008 Redbelt Mike Terry
Slapper Short Film, Writer/Director
2009 Endgame Thabo Mbeki Nomination: 2010 Golden Globe Awards- Best Actor in a (Mini)Series or TV Film
Tonight at Noon Lee/Evans
2012 Adrian Helmsley
2010 Salt Peabody Nomination: 2010 Black Reel Awards- Best Supporting Actor
2011 The Suffering Torque

Theatre

Year(s)
of appearance
Film Role Awards and nominations
1997 Macbeth (first performed c. 1707)
by William Shakespeare
Malcolm
1999 Sparkleshark (first performed 1993)
by Philip Ridley
2000 Blue/Orange (2000)
by Joe Penhall
Chris Jack Tinker Award for Most Promising Newcomer, 2000 Critics' Circle Theatre Awards

Outstanding Newcomer, 2000 London Evening Standard Theatre Award
Nomination: Best Supporting Actor, 2001 Laurence Olivier Award

Romeo and Juliet (c. 1595)
by William Shakespeare
Romeo Nomination: Ian Charleson Award
Peer Gynt (first performed 1876)
by Henrik Ibsen
Young Peer
2002 The Vortex (first performed 1924)
by Noël Coward

Donmar Warehouse, London

Nicky Lancaster
2007 The Seagull (1895)
by Anton Chekov
(2007 translation by Christopher Hampton)

The Royal Court, London

Boris Alexeyevich Trigorin
Othello (c. 1603)
by William Shakespeare
Othello Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor

References

  1. ^ "Chiwetel Ejiofor: Golden Globe Nominee". Golden Globe Database. http://www.goldenglobes.org/browse/member/30942. Retrieved 2009-10-20.  
  2. ^ Hattenstone, Simon (Saturday 10 July 2004). "The rainbow's end Arts". Guardian News and Media Limited. http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2004/jul/10/theatre.dirtyprettythings. "Life, he says, was always precarious for his parents in Nigeria - they belonged to the Christian Ibo tribe..."  
  3. ^ Raphael, Amy. "Almost famous", The Guardian, 3 November 2002. Accessed 9 July 2007.
  4. ^ Chiwetel Ejiofor: it's always the quiet ones... - Telegraph
  5. ^ Talk to Me, FocusFeatures.com. Accessed 29 July 2007.
  6. ^ Press reviews: Othello, bbc.co.uk. Accessed 5 December 2007
  7. ^ London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 58729, p. 10, 14 June 2008.

External links


Chiwetel Ejiofor
File:Chiwetel Ejiofor at the 2008 Tribeca Film
Ejiofor at the 2008 Tribeca Film Festival premiere of Redbelt
Born Chiwetelu Umeadi Ejiofor
10 July 1977 (1977-07-10) (age 33)
London, England, UK
Occupation Actor
Years active 1995–present

Chiwetelu Umeadi "Chiwetel" Ejiofor,[1] OBE (pronounced /ˈtʃuːwɨtɛl ˈɛdʒi.oʊfɔr/ CHEW-i-tel EJ-i-oh-for;[2] born 10 July 1977)[3][1] is a British actor of stage and screen. He has received numerous acting awards and award nominations, including the 2006 BAFTA Awards Rising Star, three Golden Globe Awards' nominations, and the 2007 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor for his performance in Othello.

Contents

Early years

Ejiofor was born in London's Forest Gate to Nigerian parents who belonged to the Igbo ethnic group.[4] His father, Arinze, was a doctor, and his mother, Obiajulu, was a pharmacist.[5][6] He began acting in school plays at the age of thirteen at Dulwich College and joined the National Youth Theatre and played the title role in Othello at the Bloomsbury Theatre in September 1995, and again at the Theatre Royal, Glasgow in 1996 when he starred opposite Rachael Stirling, who played Desdemona.

Career

Ejiofor made his film debut in the television movie Deadly Voyage in 1996. He went on to become a prominent stage actor in London. In Steven Spielberg's Amistad, he gave memorable support to Djimon Hounsou's Cinque as interpreter Ens. James Covey. In 1999, he appeared in the British film G:MT. In 2000, he starred in Blue/Orange at the Royal National Theatre (Cottesloe stage), and later at the Duchess Theatre. That same year, his performance as Romeo in William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet was nominated for the Ian Charleson Award. Ejiofor was awarded the Jack Tinker Award for Most Promising Newcomer at the 2000 Critics' Circle Theatre Awards. For his performance in Blue/Orange, he received the 2000 London Evening Standard Theatre Award for Outstanding Newcomer and a 2001 nomination for the Laurence Olivier Theatre Award Best Supporting Actor.

Ejiofor had his first leading film role in the 2002's Dirty Pretty Things, for which he won a British Independent Film Award for best actor. He also starred in a 2003 BBC adaptation of Chaucer's The Knight's Tale as well as another BBC series Trust in the same year. He starred alongside Hilary Swank in 2004's Red Dust, portraying the fictional politician Alex Mpondo of post-apartheid South Africa. He played the central part of Prince Alamayou in Peter Spafford's radio play I Was a Stranger, broadcast on BBC Radio 4 on 17 May 2004, and he played the god Dionysus, alongside Paul Scofield's Cadmus and Diana Rigg's Agave, in Andrew Rissik's play, Dionysus, based upon Euripides' Bacchae, also broadcast by the BBC. He also received acclaim for his performance as a complex antagonist The Operative in the 2005 movie Serenity. Ejiofor played a revolutionary in the highly acclaimed 2006 film Children of Men. His singing and acting performance in Kinky Boots received Golden Globe and British Independent Film Award nominations. He was also nominated for the 2006 BAFTA Rising Star Award, which recognises emerging British film talent. Ejiofor's performance in Tsunami: The Aftermath received a 2007 Golden Globe nomination for best actor in a miniseries or film made for TV.

In 2007, he starred opposite Don Cheadle in Talk to Me,[7] a film based on the true story about Ralph "Petey" Greene (played by Cheadle), an African American radio personality in the '60s and '70s. He performed on stage in The Seagull at the Royal Court Theatre from 18 January to 17 March 2007.

Ejiofor is considered one of the leading candidates to play T'Challa in the proposed Black Panther movie based on the Marvel comic books character.

In 2007, he reprised his role as Othello at the Donmar Warehouse, alongside Kelly Reilly as Desdemona, and Ewan McGregor as Iago. The production received favorable reviews, with particularly strong praise for Ejiofor. "Chiwetel Ejiofor produces one of the most memorable performances of Othello in recent years".[8] He was awarded the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor for his performance.

He was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2008 Birthday Honours.[9] In the same year, he made his directorial debut in the short film, Slapper, which he also wrote, based on an idea by editor/director Yusuf Pirhasan.[10]

Ejiofor was the lead alongside John Cusack in the 2009 film 2012. The film went on to gross over 700 million dollars, and is among the list of highest-grossing films of all time and placing 5th of top films of 2009.

In 2010 he starred as a government agent in the Angelina Jolie thriller Salt.

Selected works

Filmography

Year Film Role Notes Awards and nominations
1996 Deadly Voyage Ebow
1997 Amistad Ens. James Covey
1999 G:MT - Greenwich Mean Time Rix
2002 Dirty Pretty Things Okwe American Black Film Festival Award for Best Performance by an Actor
Black Reel Award for Best Actor
British Independent Film Award for Best Actor
Evening Standard British Film Award for Best Actor
San Diego Film Critics Society Award for Best Actor
Nominated — British Independent Film Award for Best Newcomer
Nominated — Chicago Film Critics Association for Most Promising Performer
Nominated — European Film Award for Best Actor
Nominated — London Film Critics' Circle Award for British Actor of the Year
Nominated — Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Breakthrough Performance
Nominated — Washington D.C. Area Film Critics Association Award for Best Actor
2003 Twelfth Night, or What You Will Orsino TV movie
Love Actually Peter Storyline: Juliette, Peter and Mark Nominated — Phoenix Film Critics Society Awards Best Ensemble Acting
2004 She Hate Me Frank Wills
Red Dust Alex Mpondo
Melinda and Melinda Ellis
2005 Four Brothers Victor Sweet Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Ensemble
Serenity The Operative Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actor
Slow Burn Ty Trippin
Kinky Boots Lola Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Black Movie Award for Outstanding Performance by an Actor in a Leading Role
Nominated — British Independent Film Award for Best Actor
Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Musical or Comedy
2006 Inside Man Detective Bill Mitchell
Children of Men Luke Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actor
Tsunami: The Aftermath Ian Carter TV mini-series Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated — Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Mini-Series, TV Film or Dramatic Special
2007 Talk to Me Dewey Hughes Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Male
Nominated — Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
American Gangster Huey Lucas Nominated — Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2008 Redbelt Mike Terry Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Actor
Slapper Short Film, Writer/Director
2009 Endgame Thabo Mbeki Nominated — Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
2012 Adrian Helmsley Nominated — Black Reel Award for Best Supporting Actor
Nominated — Image Award for Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Motion Picture
2010 Tonight at Noon Lee/Evans Post-production[11]
Salt Peabody
Three Way Split In production[11]
2011 The Suffering Torque Announced[11]

Theatre

Year(s)
of appearance
Work Role Awards and nominations
1997 Macbeth (first performed c. 1607)
by William Shakespeare
Malcolm
1999 Sparkleshark (first performed 1993)
by Philip Ridley
2000 Blue/Orange (2000)
by Joe Penhall
Chris Jack Tinker Award for Most Promising Newcomer, 2000 Critics' Circle Theatre Awards

Outstanding Newcomer, 2000 London Evening Standard Theatre Award
Nomination: Best Supporting Actor, 2001 Laurence Olivier Award

Romeo and Juliet (c. 1595)
by William Shakespeare
Romeo Nomination: Ian Charleson Award
Peer Gynt (first performed 1876)
by Henrik Ibsen
Young Peer
2002 The Vortex (first performed 1924)
by Noël Coward

Donmar Warehouse, London

Nicky Lancaster
2007 The Seagull (1895)
by Anton Chekhov
(2007 translation by Christopher Hampton)

The Royal Court, London

Boris Alexeyevich Trigorin
Othello (c. 1603)
by William Shakespeare
Othello 2008 Laurence Olivier Award for Best Actor

References

  1. ^ a b http://ftvdb.bfi.org.uk/sift/individual/684742
  2. ^ inogolo.com
  3. ^ born in 1977, as stated by Ejiofor at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l_UDXHRlCRs, at 9:30 mark
  4. ^ Hattenstone, Simon (Saturday 10 July 2004). "The rainbow's end Arts". The Guardian (London). http://www.guardian.co.uk/stage/2004/jul/10/theatre.dirtyprettythings. "Life, he says, was always precarious for his parents in Nigeria - they belonged to the Christian Ibo tribe..." 
  5. ^ Raphael, Amy. "Almost famous", The Guardian, 3 November 2002. Accessed 9 July 2007.
  6. ^ Husband, Stuart (11 November 2007). "Chiwetel Ejiofor: it's always the quiet ones...". The Daily Telegraph (London). http://www.telegraph.co.uk/arts/main.jhtml?xml=/arts/2007/11/11/sv_chiwetelejiofor.xml&page=2. Retrieved 28 April 2010. 
  7. ^ Talk to Me, FocusFeatures.com. Accessed 29 July 2007.
  8. ^ Press reviews: Othello, bbc.co.uk. Accessed 5 December 2007
  9. ^ London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 58729, p. 10, 14 June 2008.
  10. ^ Ejiofor, Chiwetel (June 18, 2008). "Can you bring it down a notch, Bill?". London: guardian.co.uk. http://www.guardian.co.uk/film/2008/jun/18/news.features. Retrieved August 17, 2010. 
  11. ^ a b c Chiwetel Ejiofor at the Internet Movie Database, accessed 16 July 2010

External links


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