Ejiofor was born in London’s Forest Gate area, to upper middle-class Nigerian parents of Igbo descent. His father, Arinze, was a doctor, and his mother, Obiajulu, was a pharmacist. He has one sibling Zain Asher.; a younger sister who is a CNN correspondent. In 1988, when Ejiofor was 11, during a family trip to Nigeria for a wedding, he and his father were driving to Lagos after the celebrations when their car was involved in a head-on crash with a lorry which killed his dad and left him badly injured. To date he still has scars on his forehead which remind him of the terrible ordeal.
Chiwetel Ejiofor Education Details
Ejiofor began acting in school plays at his junior school, Dulwich Prep London (known at the time as ‘Dulwich College Preparatory School’), where he played the gravedigger in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet. He continued nurturing his talent of acting at his senior school, Dulwich College and later joined the National Youth Theatre. Later on he got into the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art but left after his first year, after being cast in Steven Spielberg’s film Amistad.
Chiwetel Ejiofor Marriage Details
Chiwetel Ejiofor is not married he however was said to be in a relationship with Sari Mercer, from 2013 and split up after a few years. Currently, Ejiofor is in a relationship with model, Frances Aaternir. Ejiofor is also a very vocal supporter of the causes of the ‘LGBT’ community and has championed for equalism regardless of sexual orientation and against alienation of the LGBT community.
Furthermore he is a philanthropist, and has undertaken several charity works in Nigeria. He was honored with the ‘Global Promise Award,’ by the ‘GEANCO Foundation,’ for his social work. In 2016.
On 12 September 2016, Ejiofor, as well as Cate Blanchett, Jesse Eisenberg, Peter Capaldi, Douglas Booth, Neil Gaiman, Keira Knightley, Juliet Stevenson, Kit Harington and Stanley Tucci, featured in a video from the United Nations’ refugee agency UNHCR to help raise awareness to the global refugee crisis. The video, titled “What They Took With Them”, has the actors reading a poem, written by Jenifer Toksvig and inspired by primary accounts of real refugees, and is part of UNHCR’s #WithRefugees campaign, of which also includes a petition to governments to expand asylum to provide further shelter, integrating job opportunities, and education.
Chiwetel Ejiofor Career Details And Awards
Ejiofor caught the attention of Steven Spielberg who cast him in the critically acclaimed Amistad (1997) alongside Morgan Freeman and Anthony Hopkins at a very young age even before he cleared art school.
He has since been seen on the big screen in numerous features including Stephen Frears’ Dirty Pretty Things (2002) (for which he won Best Actor at the British Independent Film Awards, the Evening Standard Film Awards, and the San Diego Film Critics Society Awards), Love Actually (2003), Woody Allen’s Melinda and Melinda (2004), Kinky Boots (2005), Inside Man (2006), Children of Men (2006), American Gangster (2007) and Talk to Me (2007), for which his performance won him an Independent Spirit Award for Best Supporting Actor.
Ejiofor has balanced his film and television commitments with a number of prestigious stage productions. In 2008, his portrayal of the title role in Michael Grandage’s “Othello” at the Donmar Warehouse alongside Ewan McGregor was unanimously commended and won him best actor at the 2008 Laurence Olivier Awards and Evening Standard Theatre Awards. He also received nominations in the South Bank Show Awards and the what’s On Stage Theatregoers’ Choice Awards in 2009.
His other stage roles include Roger Michell’s “Blue/Orange” in 2000 which received the Laurence Olivier Award for Best Play, and the same year Tim Supple’s “Romeo and Juliet” in which Ejiofor portrayed the title role.
Following his television debut in the series episode Screen Two: Deadly Voyage (1996), Ejiofor has complimented his film and theatre work on the small screen in productions including Murder in Mind (2001), created by the award-winning writer Anthony Horowitz, Trust (2003), Twelfth Night, or What You Will (2003), and Canterbury Tales (2003). His television appearance in the hard hitting emotional drama Tsunami: The Aftermath (2006).
Ejiofor also appeared in such notable films as Endgame (2009), Channel 4’s moving drama set in South Africa for which his performance earned him a Golden Globe Award nomination for Best Performance by an Actor in a Miniseries; Roland Emmerich’s action feature 2012 (2009), opposite John Cusack, Danny Glover and Thandie Newton; and Salt (2010), alongside Angelina Jolie and Liev Schreiber. In 2013, he starred in Half of a Yellow Sun (2013) and 12 Years a Slave (2013), receiving an Academy Award nomination for Best Actor for the latter film.