Don Hahn, the renownedanimation producer whose credits include The Lion King and Beauty And The Beast, will receive the Friz Award at the 9th AnnualInternational Family Film Festival Awards in Valencia, California, on May 1.

Since its inception in 1994,the award - named after Warner Bros animator and 1994 honouree Friz Freleng -has gone to such luminaries as Chuck Jones, Charles Schultz and lastyearís winner, Roy E Disney.

In a statement, IFFFdirector Chris Shoemaker said Hahn has played a major role in shaping theanimation genre.

Starting at Disney in 1975,the producer has gone on to receive 17 Academy Award nominations and generatednearly $2bn worldwide.

Among his roster of hits areBeauty And The Beast, which in1992 became the first animated picture to receive a best picture Oscarnomination, and 1994ís The Lion King, which went on to becomeDisney's biggest grossing of all time.

More recently Hahn hasserved as executive producer on The Emperor's New Groove and producer on Atlantis: The Lost Empire. He is currently producing Haunted Mansion, which is due in theatres in November.

The IFFF runs fromApr-25-May 3 and Sept 12-15 at the Algonquin Theatre in Manasquan, New Jersey,under the aegis of the Garden State International Family Film Festival.