Oscar-winner Morgan Freeman has advised budding actors that the biggest challenge of their careers will be in securing their big break.
Morgan Freeman received an Oscar for Million Dollar Baby in 2005
"Once you've gotten the job, there's nothing to it," he told students at the University of California, Los Angeles.
"If you're an actor, you're an actor. Doing it is not the hard part. The hard part is getting to do it."
Freeman, who won a best supporting actor Oscar in 2005, was presented with an award for outstanding screen work.
The 68-year-old said he was honoured to collect the Spencer Tracy Award, which has previously been won by stars such as Jimmy Stewart, Michael Douglas, Denzel Washington and Sir Anthony Hopkins.
"To be included among this group of highly accomplished actors is just magical," he added.
Freeman struggled to find work early in his career, before receiving a series of Academy Award nominations for Street Smart, Driving Miss Daisy and The Shawshank Redemption.
He played a worldly-wise boxing trainer in the film which earned him the Oscar, Million Dollar Baby.
The movie was produced by Clint Eastwood and written by Paul Haggis, who won a best picture Oscar this week for the race ensemble drama Crash.