AFI’s set to fete Hanks

School also signs USA deal to televise tribute

The American Film Institute will bestow Tom Hanks with the 30th AFI Life Achievement Award.

AFI will fete the multihyphenate June 12 at the Kodak Theater.

AFI also announced Thursday a multiyear agreement with USA Networks to air the tribute; the cabler has skedded the initial broadcast for June 23. Last year’s ceremony, which honored Barbra Streisand, aired on Fox as part of a rotating deal among Fox, CBS, ABC and NBC.

“Tom Hanks is American film’s Everyman for a new generation,” AFI board of trustees chair Howard Stringer said. “It is fitting that he receive the award from the nation’s preeminent cultural arts organization as his talent and commitment to his craft is only matched by his great respect for and understanding of American history.

As for the USA deal, Stringer said, “Barry Diller was one of the architects of the first AFI Life Achievement Award in 1973, so we enjoy a rich past together and look forward to an enduring future.”

Nod, which has been given to such luminaries as John Ford, William Wyler, Kirk Douglas, Sidney Poitier and Steven Spielberg is presented to a single honoree each year based on the following criteria: “Recipient should be one 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.” In 1993, the criteria was extended to encompass “individuals with active careers and work of significance yet to be accomplished.”

Hanks, along with wife Rita Wilson, is next producing the upcoming romantic comedy “My Big Fat Greek Wedding.” In his next acting gig, Hanks toplines Sam Mendes’ “The Road to Perdition.”

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