Ealing Film Director Tipped For Oscar Glory

But Drayton Manor school days weren't the happiest for Steve McQueen

Related Links

Honours For Local Residents



Sign up for our free newsletter

Comment on this story on the

Ealing born Steve McQueen is receiving much critical attention and no doubt will be celebrating after hearing his new film has just been nominated for nine Oscars.

The 44 year old film director who grew up 'near Ealing Studios', could win Best Director for his universally acclaimed 12 Years a Slave - a brutal portrayal of slavery in 19th century America.

The film has already been nominated for 10 BAFTAS.

12 Years a Slave is front-runner for the coveted best picture Oscar after picking up a Golden Globe last weekend for best film drama.

But it's not been all red carpet treatment for the 44 year old.

He has told reporters that as a teenager he was dyslexic and placed in the lowest stream at Drayton Manor School.

He said: '' School was scary for me because no one cared, and I wasn’t good at it because no one cared. At 13 years old, you are marked, you are dead, that’s your future.''

He was encouraged to take up a trade but decided to do A-level art which he said is what saved him.

Drayton Manor High School say they are ' absolutely delighted that a former student of the school has reached such heights. To win Best Picture at the Golden Globes and to be nominated in so many BAFTA and Oscar Categories including Best Picture is an outstanding achievement.'

In 2000 he returned to speak at an awards evening at the school which delighted staff and pupils

'' We remember his truly inspirational speech and our students at the time being incredibly motivated.  We hope that Steve McQueen will be able to join us again in the future at other Drayton Manor events and meet some of our current students.''

McQueen, who now lives in Amsterdam, first found fame as a video artist winning the Turner Prize in 2006. His mainstream movie career began with Hunger in 2006. He received an OBE in 2002 and CBE in 2011.

He's now teaming up with the BBC to make an epic drama about the lives of black Britons over more than half a century.

The BAFTAS take place on Sunday 16 February, the Oscars take place on 2nd March.




16th January 2014