He's a jolly Goodfella - Trinity honours icon Scorsese
Oscar-winning director Martin Scorsese said he was "surprised and moved" to be honoured by Trinity College at a ceremony in Dublin.
While most of the movie world's biggest stars are descending on Hollywood ahead of the 89th Academy Awards tomorrow, the industry icon chose to spend the weekend in the capital.
The Departed director (74) took home an award of his own after being given a gold medal for his honorary patronage by the college's Philosophical Society.
Arriving fashionably late with his wife Helen and daughter Francesca, he proved he was still a box office draw as a huge crowd gathered in the Front Square of the college to catch a glimpse of him. Presented with the medal by society president Matthew Nuding to huge cheers from onlookers, Scorsese described TCD as "one of the world's greatest and most venerable institutions of learning".
"I accept the honour with gratitude," he said.
Scorsese is following in some illustrious footsteps, including Al Pacino, Helen Mirren and Prof Brian Cox, who are all honorary patrons of TCD.
Mr Nuding said the award was given to "exceptional individuals, who have excelled in their given fields".
"In a career that spans more than 50 years, his influence over the film industry cannot be overstated.
He is without a doubt one of the most significant and influential filmmakers in cinematic history," Mr Nuding said.
Today will see Scorsese pick up another accolade when President Michael D Higgins presents him with the IFTA's John Ford Award.
He will be honoured after his afternoon masterclass with IFTA members and film-makers.
He will share clips from some of his favourite movies while dispensing words of wisdom on his unique technique and speaking about key influences, including Ford. Scorsese said that to receive an award dedicated to Ford, who made 140 films, has "great personal significance for me".
In a good week for the film-maker, Netflix recently confirmed it has picked up the release rights to Scorsese's movie The Irishman, starring Robert de Niro.