Elton John, Olivia Newton-John, Steve McQueen, Sam Mendes, more receive new U.K. honors
While many of us ring in the new year with cheap champagne, cardboard crowns, and resolutions we have no intention of keeping, others are starting off 2020 with shiny new titles like sir or dame. We’re not going to judge which is better, but let’s just say we’re pretty jealous of Olivia Newton-John right now.
The Grease star, who received a damehood for “services to charity, cancer research, and entertainment,” was named among more than 1,000 others in the U.K.’s New Year Honours 2020 list.
While the majority of honorees are locals who are being recognized for their work in their communities, several other celebrities were also included. Directors Sam Mendes (1917) and Steve McQueen (12 Years a Slave) were knighted, Peaky Blinders creator Steven Knight was named as a Commander of the Order of the British Empire, Queen drummer Roger Taylor and Snow Patrol frontman Gary Lightbody were named Officers of the Order of the British Empire, and “Caribbean Queen” singer Billy Ocean was named Member of the Order of the British Empire.
Meanwhile, Sir Elton John, knighted back in 1998, has been made a Companion of Honour — a special award that is only held by 65 people at one time — for his achievements in music and extensive charity work.
Read the full list of New Year Honours 2020 here.