The Rain Man star was recognised for his contributions to American culture alongside fellow honourees Led Zeppelin and comedian David Letterman, and pals Meryl Streep and Glenn Close were among those who paid tribute to his work at the Washington, D.C. prizegiving.
Hoffman was proud to have his closest relatives with him at the bash and was excited to introduce them to U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.
He says, ""It's extraordinary. I was able to bring my whole family, including my grandchildren. They met the President, they met the First Lady; I mean, that was the most thrilling aspect of it (the event).""
But Hoffman admits he felt a little odd watching his highlight reel because he isn't ready to retire.
He tells U.S. breakfast show Today, ""(It was) quite depressing. It feels like a eulogy. It's the next best thing to being alive at your own funeral because everyone is saying only nice things about you and your life is there (on screen), and there's a sense of it being boom (final), (but) that's just the first act.""