AceShowbiz - Tom Cruise has become the first-ever actor to be honored with the Pioneer of the Year Award. The action star was honoured at a dinner on Wednesday night, April 25 at CinemaCon in Las Vegas.
The award, which is given to a member of the motion picture community to honor professional leadership, service and commitment to philanthropy, is given by the by the Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation. Previous recipients include Cecil B. DeMille, one of American cinema's founding fathers, former Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences president Cheryl Boone Isaacs and Kathleen Kennedy, president of Lucasfilm.
"I grew up going to the movies and I wanted to make movies since I was four," Tom said in his acceptance speech, according to Variety. "I'm very proud to be part of this family. We take care of our own, that's what families do. I love what I do and I will cherish this beautiful award."
The dinner, hosted by James Corden, was held at Caesars Palace, with Tom's "Mission: Impossible" co-star Simon Pegg also taking to the stage to pay tribute to his friend and colleague. Guests were treated to a highlight reel of 55-year-old Tom's Hollywood career, which has spanned more than 35 years, with the compilation receiving a standing ovation.
Later in his 15-minute speech, Tom thanked those who had helped him succeed. He also took time to acknowledge the work of the Will Rogers Motion Picture Pioneers Foundation, which provides financial assistance and supportive counselling to those in theatrical exhibition who are experiencing hardship due to illness, accident or underemployment.
Earlier on Wednesday, Tom teased details of upcoming film "Mission: Impossible - Fallout", the sixth film in the franchise, which hits cinemas in July.