Entertainment Movies Samuel L. Jackson Receives His First-Ever Oscar from Denzel Washington: 'I'm Really Proud' "Thanks to every person who has ever bought a ticket to any movie I was in," Samuel L. Jackson said upon receiving his honorary Academy Award at the Governors Awards on Friday By Scott Huver and Shafiq Najib Published on March 27, 2022 07:36 PM Share Tweet Pin Email Trending Videos Photo: Mike Coppola/Getty Samuel L. Jackson is thrilled to receive his first Oscar! Despite having been onscreen for most of his life, Jackson, 73, had never won an Oscar up until this weekend. On Friday, the Pulp Fiction star was presented with an honorary Academy Award for lifetime achievement at the Governors Awards by longtime friend Denzel Washington in a non-televised ceremony. Prior to welcoming the veteran actor onstage, Washington appeared to salute Jackson before warmly remarking on their personal and professional association, noting Jackson's status as the actor with the greatest total box office gross of all time, over $27 billion worldwide. Samuel L. Jackson's Life and Career in Photos "Sam and I go back in the theater, the Goodman Theatre," he shared. "We worked together even before that, at the Negro Ensemble Company. We did a pretty good play called The Soldier's Play that became great movie, A Soldier's Story. Wasn't as good as it would've been had Sam been in it, but that's for another day." Mike Coppola/Getty Washington also noted Jackson's career in philanthropy, with a long list of the charities with which the Marvel star has worked before inviting him to receive the award. Jackson has appeared in more than 150 films throughout his lifetime. His notable credits include Jurassic Park, Star Wars, Deep Blue Sea, and Die Hard with a Vengeance, to name a few. He was nominated for best supporting actor at the 1995 Academy Awards for his role in Pulp Fiction. Never miss a story — sign up for PEOPLE's free daily newsletter to stay up-to-date on the best of what PEOPLE has to offer, from juicy celebrity news to compelling human interest stories. Upon accepting the honorary award, Jackson touched on his long-lived friendship with Washington, saying, "We've come a long way and done a lot of things." Mike Coppola/Getty "So I'm really, really proud to receive this statue," he said before thanking the Governors for the recognition. "Who knows, that little kid from Chattanooga, Tennessee, watching movies, wishing he could be here to get the votes of people who run an organization like this that says, 'Hey, I deserve something like this,' thank you, so much." Jackson went on to reflect on his storied career while acknowledging his early lesser-known roles, including Gang Member Number Two, Bum, Hold-Up Man, and Black Guy. RELATED: Samuel L. Jackson on His Addiction Battle and How His Family's Love Changed His Life "When I got the opportunity, I tried to represent this business the best I do now," he said after thanking his wife of 42 years, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, and their daughter Zoe, calling them "his biggest critics and biggest fans." "I got out there to entertain audiences the way Hollywood entertained me. Make them forget their lives for a few hours and be thrilled, awed, or excited at the big room where make believe lives," Jackson continued. Samuel L. Jackson and LaTanya Richardson on Their 41-Year Marriage: 'We Made a Pact to Stay Together' "Thanks to every person who has ever bought a ticket to any movie I was in. It's truly been an honor and a pleasure to entertain you," he concluded his emotional speech. The ceremony also honored actress, writer, and director Elaine May, actress and director Liv Ullmann, and actor Danny Glover, who received the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. The 2022 Oscars air Sunday from Hollywood's Dolby Theatre on ABC.