Hammer horror actor Sir Christopher Lee is to receive a Bafta Fellowship at the Academy's film awards on Sunday.
"It's a very unexpected but very great honour to find myself in such distinguished company to receive the fellowship," said Sir Christopher, 88.
The actor is best known for roles in films including Dracula, the Private Life of Sherlock Holmes, The Wicker Man and The Man with the Golden Gun.
Other recipients of the award include Charlie Chaplin and Alfred Hitchcock.
Steven Spielberg, Elizabeth Taylor, Sean Connery, John Barry and Stanley Kubrick are also among those who have been honoured with the fellowship.
Last year's recipient was Vanessa Redgrave.
Bafta chairman Tim Corrie said of Lee: "He has entertained me over many years and is a bastion of British film-making around the globe."
Sir Christopher has made himself known to a new and younger audience more recently with roles in the Lord of the Rings trilogy and the Star Wars prequels.
He has also worked with director Tim Burton on films including Charlie and the Chocolate Factory and Alice in Wonderland.
Sir Christopher is also starring in Martin Scorsese's latest movie, Hugo Cabret.
The movie, which is the Oscar-winning film-maker's first move into 3D, is due for release in December 2011.
The annual Bafta awards, hosted by Jonathan Ross, will be shown on BBC One at 2100 GMT this Sunday.