Idris Elba will receive a Special Award from the British Film Academy of Film and Television (BAFTA) for his creative contribution to television and his commitment to championing diversity and new talent in the industry, the Pacific Rim star revealed Tuesday on Instagram.

Elba tells BBC News it was “a great privilege” and that it was his “mission” to give opportunities to emerging talent.

“I thank BAFTA for recognizing myself and others who are dedicated to the same cause, as these are all necessary steps towards helping to shift the awareness and understanding of the diversity gap in entertainment,” the London-born actor added.

The prestigious award is one of Britain’s highest honors, having previously gone to Nicola ShindlerClare BaldingJohn MotsonHenry NormalNick FraserLenny HenryDelia Smith and Cilla Black.

Elba’s other acting credits include Ridley Scott‘s 2007 film American Gangster and 2012’s Prometheus.  He also played Heimdall in 2011’s Thor, and its sequels: 2013’s  Thor: The Dark World and 2017’s Thor: Ragnarok, as well as 2015’s Avengers: Age of Ultron and Avengers: Infinity War in 2018.

He founded Green Door Pictures in 2013, a production company whose focus is on inclusion and discovering new film-making talent.

By George Costantino
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