A Nigerian Commander of the Order of the British Empire

Chiwetel Umeadi Ejiofor CBE is a British Nigerian actor. He portrays Faraday on the Showtime original sci-fi series, The Man Who Fell to Earth.


Ejiofor was born in Forest Gate, London to Nigerian parents of Igbo descent. When Ejiofor was 11 years old, he and his father were driving to Lagos after a wedding when they got in a head-on crash. 

His father was killed, and Ejiofor was badly injured, suffering lifelong scars that are visible on his forehead.

Ejiofor is an award-winning actor who, after enrolling at the National Youth Theatre in 1995 and attending the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, made his television debut in 1996 on a single episode of Screen Two. 

His first notable role came not much later after being cast by Steven Spielberg in a supporting role in the 1997 film Amistad as James Covey. His other credits include Dirty Pretty Things, Four Brothers, and Endgame. 

In 2013, Ejiofor was cast as Solomon Northup in 12 Years a Slave, for which he received Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations, along with the BAFTA Award for Best Actor. 

A year later, he was nominated for a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his performance on Dancing on the Edge.

Separate from his acting career, Ejiofor was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire by Queen Elizabeth II for services to the arts in 2018. He was later elevated to Commander of the Order of the British Empire in the 2015 Birthday Honours.

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