Ben Kingsley was born Krishna Bhanji on December 31, 1943 in Scarborough, Yorkshire, England. His father, Rahimtulla Harji Bhanji, was a Kenyan-born medical doctor, of Gujarati Indian descent, and his mother, Anna Lyna Mary (Goodman), was an English actress. Ben began to act in stage plays during the 1960s. He soon became a successful stage actor, and also began to have roles in films and television. His birth name was Krishna Bhanji, but he changed his name to "Ben Kingsley" soon after gaining fame as a stage actor, fearing that a foreign name could hamper his acting career.
Kingsley first earned international fame for his performance in the drama movie Gandhi (1982). His performance as Mohandas K. Gandhi earned him international fame. He won many awards - including an Academy Award for Best Actor. He also won Golden Globe, BAFTA and London Film Critics' Circle Awards. After acting in Gandhi (1982), Ben was recognized as one of the finest British actors.
After his international fame for appearing in Gandhi (1982), Kingsley appeared in many other famous movies. His success as an actor continued. His performance as Itzhak Stern in the drama movie Schindler's List (1993) earned him a BAFTA nomination for best supporting actor. Schindler's List (1993) won seven Academy Awards, including Best Picture. During the late 1990s, Kingsley acted in many successful movies. He played Sweeney Todd in the television movie The Tale of Sweeney Todd (1997), for which he was nominated for the Screen Actors' Guild Award. His other notable role was as Otto Frank in the television movie Anne Frank: The Whole Story (2001), for which he won the Screen Actors' Guild Award.
In 2002, Kingsley was appointed Knight Bachelor of the Order of the British Empire in the Queen's New Years Honours for his services to drama. In 2013, he received the BAFTA Los Angeles Britannia Award for Worldwide Contribution to Filmed Entertainment. That same year, he also received the Fellowship Award at the Asian Awards in London, England.
Ben Kingsley currently resides in Spelsbury, Oxfordshire, England.View Full Bio