AFI Chair Howard Stringer shared why the Institute picked the Bowfinger star.
He said in a statement, "From a wild and crazy stand-up comic to one who stands tall among the great figures in this American art form, he is a multi-layered creative force bound by neither convention nor caution. His work is defined by him alone, for he is the author — and a national treasure whose work has stuck with us like an arrow in the head."
The award is given annually to a star "whose talent has in a fundamental way advanced the film art; whose accomplishment has been acknowledged by scholars, critics, professional peers and the general public; and whose work has stood the test of time." It is considered the Institute's highest honor for film.
While Martin will be the 43rd honoree, he's only the second comedian to receive the Life Achievement Award. The other recipient was Mel Brooks in 2013.
Martin is known for his work in films like Roxanne, Little Shop of Horrors, Three Amigos! and The Jerk. The SNL alum already has a shelf filled with awards, including a 2013 honorary Oscar.
AFI began handing out the prestigious honor in 1973; previous award winners include Warren Beatty, Jane Fonda and Al Pacino. Martin will receive his award in Los Angeles on June 4, 2015, and the show will be broadcast on TNT and TCM.
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