LONDON, Nov. 13 (UPI) -- Actor Benedict Cumberbatch is to be presented with The Variety Award at the Moet British Independent Film Awards ceremony in London next month.
The star of Sherlock and The Imitation Game is to receive the prize at the Dec. 7 event at Old Billingsgate.
The Variety Award "recognizes a director, actor, writer or producer who has helped to focus the international spotlight on the United Kingdom," organizers said. It has previously been bestowed on Paul Greengrass, Jude Law, Kenneth Branagh, Liam Neeson, Michael Caine, Daniel Craig, Helen Mirren and Richard Curtis.
"I am delighted to receive this prestigious award and would like to thank Variety and The Moet British Independent Film Awards for this incredible honor. It is made even more special by the recognition of The Imitation Game in this year's nominations, a film I am very proud to be a part of," Cumberbatch said in a statement Thursday.
The big-screen drama will compete for the top prize of Best British Independent Film with '71, Calvary, Mr. Turner and Pride.
In the running for Best Debut Director are Daniel Wolfe and Matthew Wolfe for Catch Me Daddy, Hong Khaou for Lilting, Iain Forsyth and Jane Pollard for 20,000 Days on Earth, Morgan Matthews for X+Y and Yann Demange for '71.
Shortlisted for Best Actress are Alicia Vikander for Testament of Youth, Cheng Pei Pei for Lilting, Gugu Mbatha-Raw for Belle, Keira Knightley for The Imitation Game and Sameena Jabeen Ahmed for Catch Me Daddy.
Up for Best Actor are Asa Butterfield for X+Y, Benedict Cumberbatch for The Imitation Game, Brendan Gleeson for Calvary, Jack O'Connell for '71 and Timothy Spall for Mr. Turner.
The nominees for Best Supporting Actor are Andrew Scott for Pride, Ben Schnetzer for Pride, Michael Fassbender for Frank, Rafe Spall for X+Y and Sean Harris for '71.