The rise and rise of Chiwetel Ejiofor (A brief history)

Onyeka Ibeanusi  | Wednesday, 19 February 2014 | 3096 Total Views


British-Nigerian actor Chiwetel Ejiofor was born Chiwetelu Umeadi Ejiofor on July 10, 1977, in Forest Gate London, England to Obiajulu and Arinze Ejiofor both from Enugu State In Nigeria. 

Chiwetel the second of four siblings, worked in medicine and had a prominent singing/performance career.

He lost his father in a car accident in a visit to Nigeria when he was a child, after which he was hospitalized for more than two months and physically scarred.


With his mother taking care of the family, Ejiofor developed a passion for reading and the stage, and as such performed with the National Youth Theatre before eventually attending the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art. He made his television debut in the thriller Deadly Voyage (1996) and made his first film appearance in Steven Spielberg's Amistad (1997).

During the early 2000s, Ejiofor had lead and supporting roles in many big-screen projects that showed his versatility as an actor. 
He recieved two Golden Globe nominations in 2006 for his roles in Kinky Boots and HBO's Tsunami: The Aftermath. Three years later he recieved another Golden Globe Nomination for the portrayal of Thabo Mbeki in the South African drama Endgame.

2013 was a very big year for the actor who has featured in the same movies with Hollywood heavyweights like Denzel washington, Angelina Jolie and Spike Lee.


Chiwetel teamed up with Award winning writer and compatriot Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie for the movie Half Of A Yellow Sun and also featured in the critically acclaimed 12 Years A Slave that same year.

2014 no doubt has been the actors most successful year so far. He recieved critical aclaim for his role in British director Steve Mcqueen's 12 Years A Slave and got another Golden Globe nomination in the "Best Actor" category. Though he lost the award to actor Matthew McConaughey for his lead role in 2013's Dallas Buyers Club, Ejiofor was nominated for the Academy Award (OSCARS) for best actor in 2014.


He went on to win the Best Actor of 2014 at the British Award For Talented Actors (BAFTA) for his role in 12 Years A Slave beating Leornado Di'Caprio, Brad Pitt,Tom Hanks and Christian Bale.

With his latest progress and nominations, we hope Chiwetel Ejiofor wins the Academy Award (OSCARS).


Dirty Pretty Things (2002)
Love Actually (2003) alongside Audrey Tatou.
Serenity (2005)
Cuarón's Children of Men (2006)
She Hate Me (2004)
Inside Man (2006)
American Gangster (2007) alongside Denzel Washington and Spike Lee.
Kinky Boots (2006)
Tsunami: The Aftermath (2006)
Salt (2010)
2012 (2009)
12 Years a Slave (2013)
Half Of A Yellow Sun (2013)