Denzel Washington awarded AFI Life Achievement Award

Stars including Ava DuVernay, Chadwick Boseman and Jodie Foster were among the guests honouring Denzel.

Denzel Washington was feted by the American Film Institute (AFI) in a special ceremony on Thursday.

The movie legend was the 47th recipient of the AFI Life Achievement Award, and was the man of the hour at a gala tribute held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.

Peers including Ava DuVernay, Chadwick Boseman and Jodie Foster were there to cheer him on.

Talking to Entertainment Tonight about his biggest achievement in life, Denzel ignored his stellar film career, which has won him two Oscars, and instead chose his wife of nearly 36 years, Pauletta.

"(Actually) I was pointing to her," Denzel said when Pauletta suggested their four children. "That's my biggest lifetime achievement."

The 64-year-old also revealed how honoured he was to be chosen by the AFI, following in the footsteps of Al Pacino, Tom Hanks and Jane Fonda.

"I'm humbled, I'm grateful, I'm thankful... I've never done this before so I can't really tell you how I feel," he smiled. "It doesn't feel like other times I'm on the red carpet. I'm usually promoting a film or at an award show. (Here) I've already won, I guess, so it's different. It's relaxed."

Other guests in attendance included Morgan Freeman, Mahershala Ali and Michael B. Jordan.

And Beyonce surprised guests when she stepped out on stage to heap praise on another honouree of the night, Franklin J. Schaffner Award recipient Melina Matsoukas.

Denzel can next be seen in Joel Coen’s version of Macbeth, which is in the pre-production stage. He is also about to start work on Little Things, with Rami Malek.

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