LOS ANGELES — Spike Lee will honor the career of Denzel Washington by presenting his friend and collaborator with the American Film Institute’s Life Achievement Award.
AFI said Tuesday that Lee will present the actor and director with the honor at a gala Thursday at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood.
Lee has directed Washington in four films, including “Malcolm X” and “Inside Man.” He also worked with Washington’s son, John David, on the 2019 Oscar best-picture nominee “BlacKkKlansman.”
It’s a role reversal for Washington, who has helped present Lee with an honorary Oscar in 2015 and an NAACP Hall of Fame Award in 2003.
Mahershala Ali will join a star-studded list of presenters including Morgan Freeman, Chadwick Boseman and Julia Roberts.
The tribute will air on TNT on at 10 p.m. June 20.
Washington, 64, joins the ranks of Mel Brooks, Robert De Niro, Meryl Streep and Alfred Hitchcock. Last year’s AFI honoree was George Clooney.