Denzel Washington will receive one of the most prestigious honors in Hollywood next year.
The American Film Institute has named the two-time Oscar-winning actor the recipient of its 2019 Life Achievement Award in celebration of his 41-year career in the entertainment industry.
As an actor, writer, and director, the 63-year-old established himself as an icon of American cinema with Oscar-winning performances in Glory and Training Day, while also appearing in memorable films like Malcolm X, American Gangster, Flight, and Philadelphia.
Washington made his feature filmmaking debut on 2002’s Antwone Fisher, later following the film up with The Great Debaters in 2007. His most recent effort behind the camera, the 2016 period drama Fences, received four Oscar nominations — including one for Best Picture.
To date, Washington’s pictures have grossed a total of $2.5 billion in the United States alone, with his most recent outing — July’s action sequel The Equalizer 2 — crossing the $100 million mark after a successful run on domestic screens this summer.
AFI’s Life Achievement Award has been handed out annually since 1973, the year filmmaker John Ford took the inaugural prize. Since then, the likes of Meryl Streep, George Clooney, Orson Welles, Alfred Hitchcock, Frank Capra, Sidney Poitier, Barbra Streisand, and Jane Fonda have claimed the honor.
TNT will air the presentation of the accolade during its AFI Life Achievement Award Tribute Special on June 6, 2019.