Palme d'Or

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Palme d'Or
Palme dor.png
Presented byFestival International du Film de Cannes
First awarded1955 (awarded to Marty)
Currently held byParasite (2019)

The Palme d'Or (French pronunciation: ​[palm(ə) dɔʁ]; English: Golden Palm) is the highest prize awarded at the Cannes Film Festival.[1] It was introduced in 1955 by the festival's organizing committee. Previously, from 1939 to 1954, the highest prize at the festival was the Grand Prix du Festival International du Film.[1] In 1964, The Palme d'Or was replaced again by the Grand Prix, before being reintroduced in 1975.[1]

The Palme d'Or is widely considered to be one of the most prestigious awards in the film industry.[2][3][4][5]


The Commune of Cannes coat of arms

In 1954, the festival decided to present an award annually, titled the Grand Prix of the International Film Festival, with a new design each year from a contemporary artist. The festival's board of directors invited several jewellers to submit designs for a palm, in tribute to the coat of arms of the city of Cannes evoking the famous legend of Saint Honorat and the palm trees lining the famous Promenade de la Croisette.[1] The original design by Parisian jeweller Lucienne Lazon, who took inspiration in a sketch done by legendary director Jean Cocteau, had the bevelled lower extremity of the stalk forming a heart, and the pedestal a sculpture in terracotta by the artist Sébastien.[6]

In 1955, the first Palme d'Or was awarded to Delbert Mann for the film Marty. From 1964 to 1974, the Festival temporarily resumed a Grand Prix.[1] In 1975, the Palme d'Or was reintroduced and has since remained the symbol of the Cannes Film Festival, awarded every year to the director of the winning film, and was then presented in a case of pure red Morocco leather lined with white suede.[1]

As of 2019, Jane Campion is the only female director to have won the Palme d'Or, for her work on The Piano. However, in 2013, when Blue Is the Warmest Color won the Palme d'Or, the Steven Spielberg-headed jury awarded it to the film's director Abdellatif Kechiche, as well as the film's actresses Adèle Exarchopoulos and Léa Seydoux.[7] This marks the first time multiple Palme d'Or trophies were given out in the festival's history.[8]

Palme d'Or awarded to Apocalypse Now at the 1979 Cannes Film Festival

The jury decided to award the actresses alongside the director due to a Cannes policy that forbids the Palme d'Or-winning film from receiving any additional awards, thereby preventing the jury from rewarding both the film and the film's actresses separately.[9] Of the unorthodox decision, Spielberg said that "had the casting been 3% wrong, it wouldn't have worked like it did for us".[10] Kechiche later auctioned off his Palme d'Or trophy to fund his new feature film, and expressed dissatisfaction about the festival having given out multiple trophies in an interview with The Hollywood Reporter, saying that he felt they had "publicly insulted" him by doing it, and that "liberating myself from this Palme d’Or is a way of washing my hands of this sorry affair".[8]

Since its reintroduction, the prize has been redesigned several times. At the beginning of the 1980s, the rounded shape of the pedestal, bearing the palm, gradually transformed to become pyramidal in 1984. In 1992, Thierry de Bourqueney redesigned the Palme and its pedestal in hand-cut crystal. In 1997, Caroline Scheufele redesigned the statuette and since then, has been manufactured by Swiss jewellery Chopard. The palm is made from 4.16 oz (118 grams) of 18-carat yellow gold while the base of the branch forms a small heart. The Palme d’or rests on a dainty rock crystal cushion shaped like an emerald-cut diamond.[11] A single piece of cut crystal forms a cushion for the palm, which was hand-cast into a wax mould and now presented in a case of blue Morocco leather. In 1998, Theo Angelopoulos was the first director to win the Palme d'or as we now know it today for his film Eternity and a Day.[12]

The winner of the 2014 Palme d'Or, Winter Sleep—a Turkish film by Nuri Bilge Ceylan—occurred during the same year as the 100th anniversary of Turkish cinema. Upon receiving the award, Ceylan dedicated the prize to both the "young people" involved in the ongoing political unrest in Turkey and the workers who were killed in the Soma mine disaster, which occurred on the day prior to the commencement of the awards event.[13]

In 2017, the award was re-designed to celebrate the festival's 70th anniversary.[1] The diamonds were provided by an ethical supplier certified by the Responsible Jewellery Council.[1]

The 2020 Cannes Film Festival was cancelled due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. 56 films were announced as official selections by the festival, but no awards were given this year.[14]

Award winners

Year English title Original title Director(s) Country
Awarded as "Grand Prix du Festival International du Film"
1939  Union Pacific Cecil B. DeMille  United States
1940–1945 No festival due to World War II.[15]
1946 The Turning Point Velikij perelom / Великий перелом Fridrikh Ermler  Soviet Union
Men Without Wings Muži bez křídel František Čáp  Czechoslovakia
The Last Chance Die Letzte Chance Leopold Lindtberg   Switzerland
Torment Hets Alf Sjöberg  Sweden
Portrait of Maria María Candelaria Emilio Fernández  Mexico
Rome, Open City Roma, città aperta Roberto Rossellini  Italy
Neecha Nagar (Lowly City) Nīcā nagar / नीचा नगर Chetan Anand  India
Brief Encounter David Lean  United Kingdom
Pastoral Symphony La symphonie pastorale Jean Delannoy  France
The Lost Weekend # Billy Wilder  United States
The Red Meadows De røde enge Bodil Ipsen and Lau Lauritzen, Jr.  Denmark
1947 Ziegfeld Follies (Best Musical Comedy) Vincente Minnelli  United States
Antoine and Antoinette (Best Psychological and Love Film) Antoine et Antoinette Jacques Becker  France
Dumbo (Best Animation Design) Ben Sharpsteen  United States
Crossfire (Best Social Film) Edward Dmytryk  United States
The Damned (Best Adventure and Crime Film) Les Maudits René Clément  France
1948 No festival due to budgetary problems.[16]
1949 The Third Man Carol Reed  United Kingdom
1950 No festival due to budgetary problems.[16]
1951 Miss Julie (tie) Fröken Julie Alf Sjöberg  Sweden
Miracle in Milan (tie) Miracolo a Milano Vittorio De Sica  Italy
1952 The Tragedy of Othello: The Moor of Venice (tie) Orson Welles  United States
Two Cents Worth of Hope (tie) Due soldi di speranza Renato Castellani  Italy
1953 The Wages of Fear Le salaire de la peur Henri-Georges Clouzot  France
1954 Gate of Hell Jigoku-mon / 地獄門 Teinosuke Kinugasa  Japan
Awarded as "Palme d'Or"
1955 Marty §# Delbert Mann  United States
1956 The Silent World Le monde du silence Jacques Cousteau and Louis Malle  France
1957 Friendly Persuasion William Wyler  United States
1958 The Cranes Are Flying Letyat zhuravli / Летят журавли Mikhail Kalatozov  Soviet Union
1959 Black Orpheus § Orfeu Negro Marcel Camus  France
1960 The Sweet Life § La dolce vita Federico Fellini  Italy
1961 The Long Absence (tie) § Une aussi longue absence Henri Colpi  France
Viridiana (tie) § Luis Buñuel  Mexico
1962 Keeper of Promises § O Pagador de Promessas Anselmo Duarte  Brazil
1963 The Leopard § Il gattopardo Luchino Visconti  Italy
Awarded as "Grand Prix du Festival International du Film"
1964 The Umbrellas of Cherbourg Les parapluies de Cherbourg Jacques Demy  France
1965 The Knack ...and How to Get It Richard Lester  United Kingdom
1966 A Man and a Woman (tie) Un homme et une femme Claude Lelouch  France
The Birds, the Bees and the Italians (tie) Signore e signori Pietro Germi  Italy
1967 Blowup Michelangelo Antonioni  United Kingdom
1968 No award this edition because the festival was cancelled midway to show solidarity with the students and workers who were demonstrating in what became known as the May 68 movement.[16]
1969 If.... Lindsay Anderson  United Kingdom
1970 MASH Robert Altman  United States
1971 The Go-Between Joseph Losey  United Kingdom
1972 The Working Class Goes to Heaven (tie) § La classe operaia va in paradiso Elio Petri  Italy
The Mattei Affair (tie) § Il caso Mattei Francesco Rosi  Italy
1973 The Hireling (tie) Alan Bridges  United Kingdom
Scarecrow (tie) Jerry Schatzberg  United States
1974 The Conversation Francis Ford Coppola  United States
Awarded as "Palme d'Or"
1975 Chronicle of the Years of Fire Chronique des années de braise Mohammed Lakhdar-Hamina  Algeria
1976 Taxi Driver Martin Scorsese  United States
1977 Padre Padrone Paolo and Vittorio Taviani  Italy
1978 The Tree of Wooden Clogs § L'albero degli zoccoli Ermanno Olmi  Italy
1979 Apocalypse Now (tie) Francis Ford Coppola  United States
The Tin Drum (tie) Die Blechtrommel Volker Schlöndorff  West Germany
1980 All That Jazz (tie) Bob Fosse  United States
Kagemusha (tie) Kagemusha / 影武者 Akira Kurosawa  Japan
1981 Man of Iron Człowiek z żelaza Andrzej Wajda  Poland
1982 Missing (tie) § Costa-Gavras  United States
The Way (tie) § Yol Yılmaz Güney and Şerif Gören  Turkey
1983 The Ballad of Narayama Narayama bushikō / 楢山節考 Shohei Imamura  Japan
1984 Paris, Texas § Wim Wenders  West Germany
1985 When Father Was Away on Business § Otats na službenom putu / Отац на службеном путу Emir Kusturica  Yugoslavia
1986 The Mission Roland Joffé  United Kingdom
1987 Under the Sun of Satan § Sous le soleil de Satan Maurice Pialat  France
1988 Pelle the Conqueror Pelle Erobreren Bille August  Denmark
1989 Sex, Lies, and Videotape Steven Soderbergh  United States
1990 Wild at Heart David Lynch  United States
1991 Barton Fink § Joel and Ethan Coen  United States
1992 The Best Intentions Den goda viljan Bille August  Sweden
1993 Farewell My Concubine (tie) Bàwáng bié jī / 霸王別姬 Chen Kaige  China
 Hong Kong
The Piano (tie) Jane Campion  New Zealand
1994 Pulp Fiction Quentin Tarantino  United States
1995 Underground Podzemlje / Подземље Emir Kusturica  FR Yugoslavia
1996 Secrets & Lies Mike Leigh  United Kingdom
1997 Taste of Cherry (tie) Ta'm-e gīlās / طعم گيلاس Abbas Kiarostami  Iran
The Eel (tie) Unagi / うなぎ Shohei Imamura  Japan
1998 Eternity and a Day § Mia aio̱nióti̱ta kai mia méra / Μια αιωνιότητα και μια μέρα Theodoros Angelopoulos  Greece
1999 Rosetta § Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne  Belgium
2000 Dancer in the Dark Lars von Trier  Denmark
2001 The Son's Room La stanza del figlio Nanni Moretti  Italy
2002 The Pianist Roman Polanski  Poland
 United Kingdom
2003 Elephant Gus Van Sant  United States
2004 Fahrenheit 9/11 Michael Moore  United States
2005 The Child L'enfant Jean-Pierre Dardenne and Luc Dardenne  Belgium
2006 The Wind That Shakes the Barley § Ken Loach  Ireland
 United Kingdom
2007 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days 4 luni, 3 săptămâni şi 2 zile Cristian Mungiu  Romania
2008 The Class § Entre les murs Laurent Cantet  France
2009 The White Ribbon Das weiße Band, Eine deutsche Kindergeschichte Michael Haneke  Germany
2010 Uncle Boonmee Who Can Recall His Past Lives Lung Bunmi Raluek Chat / ลุงบุญมีระลึกชาติ Apichatpong Weerasethakul  Thailand
2011 The Tree of Life Terrence Malick  United States
2012 Amour Michael Haneke  France
2013 Blue Is the Warmest Colour § La Vie d'Adèle: Chapitres 1 et 2 Abdellatif Kechiche  France
2014 Winter Sleep Kış Uykusu Nuri Bilge Ceylan  Turkey
2015 Dheepan Jacques Audiard  France
2016 I, Daniel Blake Ken Loach  United Kingdom
2017 The Square Ruben Östlund  Sweden
2018 Shoplifters Manbiki kazoku / 万引き家族 Hirokazu Kore-eda  Japan
2019 Parasite §# Gisaengchung / 기생충 Bong Joon-ho  South Korea
2020 No festival due to the COVID-19 pandemic.[14]
§ Denotes unanimous win
# Denotes winner of the Academy Award for Best Picture. There have been only three winners of both the Palme d’Or and the Oscar for the Best Picture: The Lost Weekend (1945), Marty (1955), and Parasite (2019).
The Palme d'Or for Union Pacific was awarded in retrospect at the 2002 festival. The festival's debut was to take place in 1939, but it was cancelled due to World War II.[17] The organisers of the 2002 festival presented part of the original 1939 selection to a professional jury of six members. The films were: Goodbye Mr. Chips, La Piste du Nord, Lenin in 1918, The Four Feathers, The Wizard of Oz, Union Pacific, and Boefje.

Multiple award winners

Eight directors or co-directors have won the award twice:[18]

Honorary Palme d'Or

In 1997, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Festival, the Cannes jury awarded a "Palme des Palmes" for the first time.[19]

Year Recipient Profession Nationality of recipient
1997 Ingmar Bergman[19] Director/Screenwriter Sweden

In 2002 the festival began to sporadically award a non-competitive Honorary Palme d'Or to directors or actors who had achieved a notable body of work but who had never won a competitive Palme d'Or.[20]

Year Recipient Profession Nationality of recipient
2002 Woody Allen[21] Director/Actor/Screenwriter United States
2003 Jeanne Moreau[22] Actress France
2005 Catherine Deneuve[23] Actress France
2007 Jane Fonda[24] Actress United States
2008 Manoel de Oliveira[25] Director/Screenwriter Portugal
2009 Clint Eastwood[26] Actor/Director United States
2011 Jean-Paul Belmondo[27] Actor France
Bernardo Bertolucci[28] Director/Screenwriter Italy
2015 Agnès Varda[29][30] Director/Screenwriter France
2016 Jean-Pierre Léaud[31] Actor France
2017 Jeffrey Katzenberg[32] Producer United States
2019 Alain Delon[33] Actor France

In 2018, the Cannes jury also awarded a "Special Palme d'Or" for the first time.[34]

Year Film Original title Director(s) Country Ref(s)
2018 The Image Book Le Livre d'image Jean-Luc Godard   Switzerland

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f g h "A brief history of the Palme d'or". Retrieved 28 May 2017.
  2. ^ "Why the Cannes Film Festival matters (and how to pronounce it)". Vox. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  3. ^ "Cannes 2017: Sweden's Ruben Östlund wins Palme d'Or for 'The Square' - France 24". France 24. 2017-05-28. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  4. ^ Hammond, Pete (2016-05-11). "Cannes Vs Oscar: Why The Palme d'Or And Best Picture Academy Award Don't Make A Perfect Match". Deadline. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  5. ^ "'Scarecrow' (1973) - Cannes: All the Palme d'Or Winners, Ranked". The Hollywood Reporter.
  6. ^ "Histoire de la Palme d'or, de Lucienne Lazon à Chopard" (in French). Retrieved 2017-05-31.
  7. ^ "Cannes: 5 unforgettable Palme d'Or winners". 2015-05-24. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  8. ^ a b "Director Abdellatif Kechiche: Why I'm Selling My Palme d'Or (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2018-01-21.
  9. ^ "Festival de Cannes - Regulations". Retrieved 28 May 2017.
  10. ^ "Conference of the Jury of 66th Festival de Cannes". Festival de Cannes. 2013. Archived from the original on 30 December 2013. Retrieved 27 May 2013.(video unavailable)
  11. ^ "THE PALME D'OR". Chopard. Retrieved 2020-03-14.
  12. ^ "A brief history of the Palme d'Or - Festival de Cannes 2019 (International Film Festival)". Retrieved 4 March 2020.
  13. ^ Xan Brooks (25 May 2014). "Cannes festival ready for shut-eye after Winter Sleep wins Palme d'Or". The Guardian. Guardian News and Media Limited. Retrieved 1 June 2014.
  14. ^ a b "What Cannes 2020 line-up says about the cancelled festival". Los Angeles Times. 2020-06-03.
  15. ^ Ronk, Liz; Rothman, Lily (May 13, 2015). "How World War II Created the Cannes Film Festival". Time. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  16. ^ a b c "Factbox: History of the Cannes film festival". Reuters. May 6, 2011. Retrieved April 5, 2020.
  17. ^ McCarthy, Todd (May 26, 2002). "'Pianist' tickles Cannes". Variety. Retrieved May 24, 2018.
  18. ^ Lodge, Guy; Gleiberman, Owen (22 May 2016). "Cannes: Ken Loach Wins His Second Palme d'Or for 'I, Daniel Blake'". Variety. Retrieved 27 June 2017.
  19. ^ a b Rooney, David (9 April 1997). "Bergman to get special Cannes salute". Variety. Retrieved 22 August 2019.
  20. ^ "A Honorary Palme at the opening ceremony of the Festival de Cannes". Cannes Film Festival. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  21. ^ Hischak, Thomas S. (2018). The Woody Allen Encyclopedia. Rowman & Littlefield. p. 340. ISBN 1538110679.
  22. ^ Dagan, Carmel; Natale, Richard (31 July 2017). "Jeanne Moreau, Star of French Film Classics, Dies at 89". Variety. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  23. ^ Singerman, Alan J.; Bissière, Michèle (2018). Contemporary French Cinema: A Student's Book. Hackett Publishing. p. 60. ISBN 1585108944.
  24. ^ "Producers Guild To Honors Jane Fonda With 2019 Stanley Kramer Award". Producers Guild of America. 20 December 2018. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  25. ^ Lee, Benjamin (2 April 2015). "Manoel de Oliveira, legendary Portuguese director, dies aged 106". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  26. ^ "Clint Eastwood gets honorary Palme d'Or". CBC News. 26 February 2009. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  27. ^ "Monica Bellucci, Jean-Paul Belmondo to Be Honored at France's Lumiere Awards". The Hollywood Reporter. 17 January 2018. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  28. ^ "Bernardo Bertolucci to receive Palme d'Or honour". BBC. 11 April 2011. Retrieved 17 January 2020.
  29. ^ "Director Agnes Varda to receive honorary Palme d'Or". BBC. Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  30. ^ "Agnes Varda to receive honorary Palme d'Or". Retrieved 3 September 2015.
  31. ^ Szalai, Georg. "Cannes: Jean-Pierre Leaud to Get Honorary Palme d'Or". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 31 May 2016.
  32. ^ Richford, Rhonda (19 May 2017). "Cannes: Jeffrey Katzenberg Feted With Honorary Palme d'Or". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 26 May 2017.
  33. ^ "Cannes: Alain Delon to Receive Honorary Palme d'Or". Variety. 17 April 2019. Retrieved 17 April 2019.
  34. ^ a b Pond, Steve (19 May 2018). "'Shoplifters' Wins Palme d'Or at 2018 Cannes Film Festival". SF Gate. Retrieved 19 May 2018.