Film director Sir Ridley Scott said he was trying to work out what he had done to merit being made a Knight Grand Cross, as he was honoured by the Prince of Wales.

Sir Ridley, 86, whose filmography includes Gladiator, Blade Runner and Alien, was recognised for services to the UK film industry at Windsor Castle on Wednesday.

He told the PA news agency: “This is the second time I’ve been honoured, I’m just trying to work out what did I do? I just do my job you know, I guess someone sees something.”

In 2002, Sir Ridley received a knighthood in the New Year Honours for his services to the British film industry.

The Golden Globe award winner from South Shields began his career as a set designer for the BBC after studying at West Hartlepool College of Art and the Royal College of Art.

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In 1977, Sir Ridley made his first foray into movies with The Duellists, which won the jury prize for best first work at the Cannes Film Festival.

He followed it with the landmark science fiction films Alien in 1979 and Blade Runner in 1982.

“I was going to be an art teacher at first, there was no film school when I was kid,” he said.

Discussing his upcoming film Gladiator 2, Sir Ridley said he wants to be “discreet” about the nature of the main character, Lucius Verus, played by Irish actor Paul Mescal.

He said: “My job is to try and just be discreet about the mystery of who this man might be.

“Frequently sequels are kind of hard work, this film is a legitimate story, which answers questions like what is the reason, why does this happen and who.”

He added that he enjoys learning about history through each film he directs or produces.

“I learn a little bit of a history every time I do a movie, I just love it, just because it’s so rich,” he said.

“What’s interesting is we keep making the same mistakes, the world doesn’t learn anything from history – look where we are now. We are brewing the perfect storm.”

The Northern Echo:

While posing for photographs outside Windsor Castle, Lionesses footballer Mary Earps was asked if she would consider acting in Gladiator 2.

“A gladiator? Oh, I don’t know. I’m not sure if I can act, if I’ve got it in me, but I’m willing to give most things a try,” she said.

Sir Ridley’s film Alien, starring Sigourney Weaver as Ellen Ripley, would go on to become what Bafta described as “one of the most influential science fiction films of all time”.

In 2018, Sir Ridley was honoured with a Bafta Fellowship.