The SNL creator and executive producer is to receive the Directorate Award at the 38th annual event in New York on 22 November (10).
The late night variety show has featured celebrity hosts including Tom Hanks, Betty White and Steve Martin during its 35 years on air.
International Academy president & CEO Bruce Paisner says: "With Saturday Night Live, Lorne Michaels opened the door to a new kind of comedy on television and since then nearly everyone has walked through it. He has changed our entertainment, affected our politics and shaped the way we view the world."
In addition to his work in television, Michaels has also produced films including Baby Mama, Mean Girls and Wayne's World.
Previous winners of the Directorate Award include media mogul Ted Turner and the BBC's John Birt.