Chiwetel Umeadi Ejiofor CBE (/ˈtʃuːətɛl ˈɛdʒioʊfɔːr/ CHOO-ə-tel EJ-ee-oh-for; born 10 July 1977) is a British actor. After enrolling at the National Youth Theatre in 1995 and attending the London Academy of Music and Dramatic Art, at age 19 and three months into his course, Ejiofor was cast by Steven Spielberg to play a supporting role in the film Amistad (1997) as James Covey.
Ejiofor portrayed the characters Okwe in Dirty Pretty Things (2002), Lola in Kinky Boots (2005), The Operative in Serenity (2005), Adrian Helmsley in 2012 (2009), Solomon Northup in 12 Years a Slave (2013), Vincent Kapoor in The Martian (2015), Karl Mordo in Doctor Strange (2016), Dr. Watson in Sherlock Gnomes (2018) and Trywell Kamkwamba in The Boy Who Harnessed the Wind (2019). He voiced Scar in the 2019 remake of The Lion King and featured in the fantasy film Maleficent: Mistress of Evil. For 12 Years a Slave, he received Academy Award and Golden Globe Award nominations, along with the BAFTA Award for Best Actor. He was nominated for a 2014 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie for his performance on Dancing on the Edge.