John Williams-AFI-website

For the first time in AFI history, America’s highest honor for a career in film will be bestowed upon a composer–John Williams, who has written the soundtrack to our lives.

“Note by note, through chord and chorus, his genius for marrying music with movies has elevated the art form to symphonic levels and inspired generations of audiences to be enriched by the magic of the movies,” said Sir Howard Stringer, Chair, AFI Board of Trustees. “AFI is proud to present him with its 44th Life Achievement Award in 2016.”

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John Williams’ storied career as the composer behind many of the greatest American films and television series of all time boasts over 150 credits across seven decades. Perhaps best known for his enduring collaboration with director Steven Spielberg, his scores are among the most iconic and recognizable in film history, from the edge-of-your-seat Jaws motif to the energy of Raiders of the Lost Ark, and the haunting notes of Schindler’s List. Always epic in scale, his music has helped define over half a century of the motion picture medium. Three of Williams’ scores landed on AFI’s 100 Years of Film Scores — a list of the 25 greatest American film scores of all time — including the unforgettable Star Wars soundtrack, at number one.

With five Academy Award wins and 49 nominations in total, Williams holds the record for the most Oscar nominations of any living person.

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Williams will be honored at a gala Tribute on June 9, 2016 in Los Angeles, California. The AFI Life Achievement Award Tribute television special will air on TNT later that same month, followed by an encore presentation on Turner Classic Movies.

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