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Steve Knight's first screenplay, Dirty Pretty Things, was made into a film directed by Stephen Frears. Upon its premiere at the 2002 Venice International Film Festival, the film attracted critical acclaim from around the world. A host of prestigious awards followed, including four British Independent Film Awards (among them Best Screenplay); and Best Film and Best Actor (Chiwetel Ejiofor) prizes at the Evening Standard British Film Awards. Mr. Knight was also honored with the Humanitas Prize; the Edgar Allan Poe Award for Best Motion Picture Screenplay; the Best British Screenwriter citation at the London Film Critics Circle; and Academy Award, BAFTA Award, and WGA Award nominations.
The Birmingham, England native attended University College London, where he studied English Literature. Upon graduation, he worked as a copywriter/producer for a Birmingham advertising agency and then as a copywriter/producer at Capital Radio.
In 1988, Mr. Knight and Mike Whitehill started a freelance writing partnership providing material for television. Based at Celador Productions, they wrote for Commercial Breakdown and The Detectives, among other programs.
Mr. Knight co-created, and Celador produced, the television series Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? The program has won awards around the globe – including a BAFTA Award, National Television Award, Silver Rose of Montreux, and the Queen's Award for Enterprise – and a worldwide following.
He has had three novels published; The Movie House, which won the WH Smith Fresh Talent Award, Alphabet City, and Out of the Blue. Alphabet City is slated for a film adaptation.
Mr. Knight's first stage play, The President of an Empty Room, was directed by Howard Davies and staged at London's National Theatre in 2005. He is currently working on a second play.
His most recent screenplay, Amazing Grace, was directed by Michael Apted and starred Ioan Gruffudd as the British anti-slavery activist and politician William Wilberforce. The script earned him a Humanitas Prize nomination.
Mr. Knight is currently at work adapting, for Focus Features and Random House Films, a feature based on Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative reporter Bob Drogin's nonfiction book Curveball, named after the code name for the Iraqi informant whose deceptive information about biological weapons was used by the U.S. government to justify the war in Iraq.