Dame Judi Dench will receive an honorary prize in recognition of her career achievements at the British Independent Film Awards (BIFAs) in December (18).
The veteran actress has been named the recipient of the Richard Harris Award, which is given to an actor who has made an outstanding contribution to British film throughout their career, and she will be presented with the honor during the annual BIFA ceremony at London’s Old Billingsgate Market on 2 December.
“It has been my absolute privilege to spend almost 60 years working in the British film industry, one of the most vibrant and creative homes for filmmakers in the world,” Judi said in a statement. “To be recognised with this award, which bears the name of the great Richard Harris and counts some of my favourite actors and actresses amongst its past recipients is a source of deep pride and a very special honor.”
The award is named after the late British actor Richard Harris, who is best known for films such as Camelot, Unforgiven and Gladiator and for playing Dumbledore in the first two Harry Potter films. He passed away in 2002 at the age of 72.
His son, actor Jared Harris, said about Judi’s honor, “Dangerous on stage, on screen and apparently behind the wheel of a car, Dame Judi Dench and Richard Harris have a lot in common! We are delighted that she has agreed to accept this award.
“Dame Judi has stolen every scene she has ever been in, and stolen our hearts along the way. Although she hates being called a national treasure and prefers to be thought of as a jobbing actor, she is undeniably both the standard bearer and the gold standard for British Actors.”
The 83-year-old follows in the footsteps of previous honorees including Daniel Day-Lewis, Helena Bonham Carter, Chiwetel Ejiofor, Julie Walters, John Hurt, Emma Thompson, and Vanessa Redgrave, who was presented with the prize last year (17).