Instead of taking pride in my knighthood, my mother was jealous of me: Ben Kingsley

  • PTI, London
  • Updated: Sep 10, 2014 14:57 IST

Oscar-award winning actor

Ben Kingsley

says his knighthood made him feel accepted in a way his own mother, actor and model Anna Goodman, never did.

The 69-year-old actor, who rose to fame in 1982 with late Lord Attenborough's Oscar-winning blockbuster Gandhi, says there is a poignant reason he treasures the knighthood he won in 2002, reported Daily Mirror.

"My mother refused to acknowledge my knighthood, which I found bitterly hurtful. The wonderful woman who is the Queen and who is almost like a mum had said, 'We accept you and love what you do'. But my mother refused to acknowledge it had taken place. She was embarrassed and bitter and jealous," Kingsley said.

"She had a circuit missing and that made her distant and somewhat baffled by her four children, two girls and two boys. Thinking perhaps it would all go away. Adulthood? Whoa. She couldn't handle it," he added.

Kingsley was born Krishna Bhanji in the East Riding of Yorkshire, son of a Kenyan-born doctor of Indian descent who moved to the UK to study medicine.

His "smoking, drinking" father died aged 54 and his mother at 96 in 2010.

Kingsley's pride in his knighthood was also heightened by the "steady stream" of racism he suffered over the years.

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