Morgan Freeman to be honored with AFI Lifetime Achievement

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The Independent Culture

The American Film Institute will pay tribute to Oscar winning actor Morgan Freeman for its prestigious 39th Lifetime Achievement Award, the AFI announced on April 26.

According to Indie Wire, the televised event will feature the following actors and directors, who will honor the venerable actor: Clint Eastwood, Tom Hanks, Helen Mirren, Mike Nichols, Jack Nicholson, Brad Pitt, Sidney Poitier, Robert Redford, Tim Robbins, Steven Spielberg, Hilary Swank, Ben Affleck, Jim Carrey, and Denzel Washington.

Proceeds from the event will go to AFI's educational and preservation programs.

"Morgan Freeman is an American treasure," stated Howard Stringer, Chair of AFI's Board of Trustees. "Across decades, whether playing a prisoner, a president or God, he embodies a calm authority that demands respect for the character and for the art form.

"His gifts to the cultural record are also underscored by his unmistakable voice, featured in narration for films such that echoes through the hearts and minds of movie lovers around the world."

Freeman won the Academy Award for Million Dollar Baby, costarring Hilary Swank and directed by Clint Eastwood, and has also received the Kennedy Center Honor.

Known for his distinctive narration in films such as March of The Penguins, he has appeared in films including Driving Miss Daisy, The Shawshank Redemption, The Bucket List, Unforgiven, Amistad, Bruce Almighty, and Invictus, which he produced through his company Revelations Entertainment.

Previous AFI winners include Dustin Hoffman, Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep, George Lucas, Elizabeth Taylor, Jack Nicholson, Steven Spielberg, Clint Eastwood, and Martin Scorsese.

Last seen in Red with Helen Mirren and Bruce Willis, in 2012 Freeman will appear in The Dark Knight Rises, the next Batman movie by Christopher Nolan, as well as The Third Act directed by Rob Reiner and costarring Annette Bening. This September he stars in Dolphin Tale with Harry Connick Jr. and Ashley Judd.

The AFI award will be presented at a gala celebration on the historic Sony lot and the show will then air on MTV Network's channel TV Land on June 26.