Monty Python's Terry Gilliam will receive a Bafta fellowship at the film awards ceremony.
Orange British Academy Film Awards organisers said the fellowship is the "highest accolade" bestowed upon someone in recognition of an outstanding and exceptional contribution to film.
Those previously honoured include Charlie Chaplin, Steven Spielberg and Dame Judi Dench. Last year's recipient was Sir Anthony Hopkins.
Gilliam said: "This is a great honour for someone who needs so many other people to do his job."
In a career spanning five decades, Gilliam has enjoyed Bafta, Academy Award and Golden Globe success.
Born in Minnesota, Gilliam worked as a cartoonist, magazine illustrator, advertising copywriter and art director.
In 1969 he teamed up with Graham Chapman, John Cleese, Eric Idle, Terry Jones and Michael Palin to form Monty Python's Flying Circus.
In 1975, the group's first film Monty Python and the Holy Grail marked Gilliam's feature length directorial debut.
He has found acclaim with a diverse range of films including Jabberwocky, Time Bandits, The Adventures of Baron Munchausen, The Fisher King, Twelve Monkeys, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas, and The Brothers Grimm.
Gilliam recently completed the late Heath Ledger's final film, The Imaginarium of Doctor Parnassus, which also stars Lily Cole, Verne Troyer, Johnny Depp, Colin Farrell and Jude Law.
He will receive the award this Sunday at London's Royal Opera House.
* The Orange British Academy Film Awards begin on BBC2 from 8pm, continuing on BBC1 from 9pm on Sunday.