London, Dec. 31 (Reuters): Screen and stage star Alan Bates and film director Ridley Scott won knighthoods today, two of a clutch of figures from the arts world honoured by Britain.
But the domestic headlines will be snatched by awards in the New Year’s Honours List for the parents of Stephen Lawrence, a Black teenager whose murder nine years ago forced Britain to confront its race relations problems.
Bates, 58, will become Sir Alan to acknowledge a career spanning five decades. Perhaps most famously he grappled naked with the late Oliver Reed in the 1969 film of D.H. Lawrence's Women in Love.
This year he shone in a star-studded cast in US director Robert Altman's award-winning Gosford Park, a satire on the British class system.
Scott, originally from Newcastle, is responsible for cult movies Blade Runner and Thelma and Louise, blockbusters like Gladiator and the Hannibal Lecter sequel Hannibal and war film Black Hawk Down.
Versatile Scottish actor Brian Cox, 56, who was first to portray cannibal serial killer Lecter on film, becomes a CBE (Commander of the Order of the British Empire).
Actress Brenda Blethyn, twice Oscar-nominated, receives an OBE (Officer of the Order of the British Empire) as does Edward Fox, 65. His distinguished theatre and cinema career featured Day of the Jackal, where he played a cold assassin, and World War II movie A Bridge Too Far.
Neville and Doreen Lawrence get OBEs for the charity they set up in their son's name. Stephen Lawrence was stabbed to death in a south London street in 1993 while waiting for a bus. His parents’ long fight for justice after police failed to successfully prosecute his killers attracted massive public sympathy. Despite strong evidence pointing to a gang of five white youths, the case against them was dropped.