Queen's Honours 2014: Daniel Day-Lewis, Damian Lewis and Angelina Jolie recognised
Story by Jack Foley
DANIEL Day-Lewis, Damian Lewis and Angelina Jolie are among the more high-profile names to be recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours.
Oscar-winning actor Daniel Day-Lewis has been made a knight, while American actress and humanitarian champion Angelina Jolie is being awarded an honorary damehood.
Homeland star Damian Lewis is made an OBE for services to drama.
Another high profile name is Downton Abbey luminary Maggie Smith, who is made Companion of Honour, for services to drama.
Commenting on his knighthood, Daniel Day-Lewis – who was recognised for services to drama, said: “I’m entirely amazed and utterly delighted in equal measure.”
The 57-year-old is known for being one of Britain’s most talented actors and, in 2013, made history by becoming the first man to win the best actor award three times.
The son of poet Cecil Day-Lewis and actress Jill Balcon, he won his first Academy Award in 1990 for My Left Foot, before following that up in 2008 for There Will Be Blood and completing his hat-trick last year, as President Abraham Lincoln in Steven Spielbery’s Lincoln.
Perhaps the most surprising name on the list, however, is that of Angelina Jolie, whose American nationality would appear to have ruled her out of such recognition. However, the Queen has opted to bestow an honorary damehood upon her for services to UK foreign policy and her work to fight sexual violence.
Despite being best known for movie roles in films like Mr & Mrs Smith (alongside partner Brad Pitt) and – currently – Maleficent, she has long been an active campaigner, working for the UN and giving generously to many charitable causes.
Most significantly, she co-founded the Preventing Sexual Violence Initiative (PSVI) in May 2012 with William Hague and is described as having made an “exceptional contribution”.
She commented: “To receive an honour related to foreign policy means a great deal to me, as it is what I wish to dedicate my working life to…. I know that succeeding in our goals will take a lifetime and I am dedicated to it for all of mine.”
Actor Damian Lewis said he was “very surprised but very happy to accept” his OBE adding: “I decided to do the very un-British thing of accepting the compliment…. I don’t think you ever stop trying to impress your parents and I hope they will be proud.”
Lewis became a household name on both sides of the Atlantic for his portrayal of an American soldier turned traitor in Homeland but has a long and varied career, including roles in Band of Brothers, The Forsyte Saga and Life (all for TV), as well as several movies. He has also appeared on the West End stage, most notably alongside Keira Knightley in The Misanthrope.
Among Dame Maggie Smith’s many credits are her Oscar-winning performance in the titular role in The Pride of Miss Jean Brodie in 1969, as well as her best supporting actress turn in 1978’s California Suite.
She has also won five BAFTAs, three Emmys, three Golden Globes, three Screen Actors Guild Awards and a Tony Award and is now a household name for her recurring role as Violet Crawley, Dowager Countess of Grantham in Downton Abbey.
She was previously made a dame in 1990 for services to the performing arts.
Other famous names included in the Queen’s Honours are: Wolf Hall novelist Hilary Mantel, who is made a Dame, pianist Andras Schiff, who receives a knighthood for services to music, Beatles biographer Hunter Davies and singer and DJ Cerys Matthews.
Davies is made an OBE alongside composer Talvin Singh and actress Phyllida Law, mother to actresses Emma and Sophie Thompson, while BBC 6 Music host Matthews is made an MBE along with journalist and children’s book specialist Julia Eccleshare and Torchwood star John Barrowman.
David Lan, artistic director at the Young Vic, becomes a CBE.