LONDON, June 2 (UPI) -- Actor Patrick Stewart was knighted Wednesday by the Queen of England at London's Buckingham Palace, officials said.
Stewart, 69, is best known for his work in the "Star Trek: The Next Generation" film and TV franchises, as well as three "X-Men" movies. He is also a noted stage actor.
Upon receiving the knighthood, Stewart credited "literally everything" he has accomplished to English teacher Cecil Dormand, who first encouraged him to perform, the BBC reported.
"Although many people in my life have had great influence on me, without this man none of it would have happened," Stewart said. "He was the one that put a copy of Shakespeare in my hand (and) said, 'Now get up on your feet and perform.'"
The actor also described his investiture as "an unlooked-for honor," the BBC said.
"But as I grew up as a child, falling in love with the theater and Shakespeare, my heroes were Sir Laurence Olivier (and) Sir John Gielgud," he said. "The knights of the theater represented to me not only the pinnacle of the profession but the esteem in which the profession was held. To find myself, to my astonishment, in that company is the grandest thing that has professionally happened to me."