Film director and producer Tim Burton was handed an award recognising his lifetime achievement last night at the Venice Film Festival.

Johnny Depp, who is starring in Burton's latest film Sweeney Todd, handed Burton the Golden Lion award at a red carpet event.

"Hopefully it just inspires me to keep going," Burton told reporters, joking that the award was better than an Oscar.

"It's actually a lot more beautiful-looking thing than a bald, naked man!"

After the show a 3D version of his hit The Nightmare Before Christmas was shown.

Other notable films from Burton's career include Edward Scissorhands, Big Fish, Charlie And The Chocolate Factory and Sleepy Hollow – all combining his imaginative storytelling with mesmerising images.

Despite being heavily pregnant Burton's partner Helen Bonham Carter arrived looking stunning on the red carpet in Venice and spent time signing autographs for fans.

Eight days after the film festival kicked off, the Italian city's red carpet has been graced by many of the industry's brightest stars.

Putting in an appearance so far have been Keira Knightley, Jude Law, Michael Caine, Heath Ledger, James McAvoy, Richard Gere and Vanessa Redgrave.

06/09/2007 17:45:34