BRITAIN’S MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE OF AFRICAN AND AFRICAN CARIBBEAN HERITAGE.
Steve is widely regarded as one of the most talented filmmakers of his generation and he remains the only black person to win an Academy Award for directing. This year the British Film Institute announced that Steve would be granted its highest honour, the BFI Fellowship at the London Film Festival. The 47-year-old, who grew up in west London, is best known for his Oscar winning film 12 Years a Slave, which made a star of actress Lupita N’yongo.The brutal historical slave drama, which also starred Chiwetel Ejiofor, Michael Fassbender and Brad Pitt, also won a Bafta Award for Best Film and a Golden Globe Award for Best Motion Picture – Drama. Steve, who has lived in Holland for many years, is also a prominent artist whose work encompasses installations and videos. His work is held in collections across the world, including London’s Tate Modern, MoMA in New York and The Art Institute of Chicago among others. Steve won the Turner Prize, Britain’s best known art award, in 1999. And in August 2016, he was awarded the prestigious Johannes Vermeer Award. The award is the Dutch state prize for the arts and comes with $112,000, which the winner may use to fund a special project in his or her specific field. In 2006, he produced Queen and Country, which commemorates the deaths of British soldiers in Iraq by presenting their portraits as a sheet of stamps. He was awarded a CBE in 2011 for services to the visual arts. TIME magazine included Steve in its annual TIME 100 as one of the ‘Most Influential People in the World’ in 2014. It said: “His storytelling is all about creating genuine emotional exchanges between the actors. “He’s always in search of the truthful moment that will give the audience real human access to difficult issues.” The director is famed for his collaborations with Fassbender, who has starred in all of Steve’s feature films to date. Hunger told the story of the 1981 Irish hunger strike while Shame was a drama about an executive struggling with sex addiction.