Steven Spielberg becomes a Knight of the British Empire (KBE) – one of the highest honors bestowed by Queen Elizabeth II — and a special tribute for an American. Spielberg is honored during a special ceremony at the British Embassy in Washington D.C. He joins an elite list of Americans, including former US Presidents George Bush and Ronald Reagan, as well as comedian Bob Hope and conductor Andre Previn.
According to the the British Embassy, "The award of an honorary knighthood recognizes Steven Spielberg’s extraordinary contribution to the entertainment industry and the British film industry over the last 25 years,“ Spielberg has been a strong supporter of the British film industry since he directed Raiders of the Lost Ark (1981) at the London Elstree Studios. In 2000, he films a 10-part television series, Band of Brothers in England.