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CANNES 2021 Awards

Cannes’ Palme D’Or goes to Titane

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- CANNES 2021: French director Julia Ducournau’s film creates a sensation and wins the supreme title, while prizes also go to Juho Kuosmanen, Renate Reinsve, Leos Carax and Nadav Lapid

Cannes’ Palme D’Or goes to Titane
Director Julia Ducournau receiving the Palme D’Or for Titane from Sharon Stone (© Andreas Rentz/Getty Images/FDC)

A thunderclap sounded across the Croisette at the close of an edition delivering great artistic quality (with a staggering abundance of films and a competition level which started off high upon the festival’s opening and continued to rise in intensity throughout the second week) and perfect management of the tricky sanitary situation. Presided over by Spike Lee, the Competition Jury of the 74th Cannes Film Festival awarded its Palme d’Or to Julia Ducournau’s Titane [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Julia Ducournau, Vincent Li…
film profile
]
, a sucker punch of a film which is, without a doubt, the most modern feature film among the 24 contenders this year.

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Thus, at 37 years of age and by way of her second feature film (her first, Raw [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Julia Ducournau
film profile
]
, was unveiled on the Croisette in 2016 within Critics’ Week), the French filmmaker becomes the second woman director ever to be honoured with this prize in the history of Cannes, following on from Jane Campion in 1993. The 14th French winner of the Palme d’Or, Titane was produced by Jean-Christophe Reymond (one of the European Film Promotion’s Producers on the Move for 2021 – read our interview) on behalf of Kazak Productions, and by Belgian firm Frakas, in co-production with Arte France Cinéma. Sales are steered by Wild Bunch International.

There were fewer surprises in store when it came to the remaining prize-winners, because even though this year’s Cannes edition didn’t unearth any crystal clear favourites, an armful of directors boasting different styles were nonetheless singled out with relative unanimity. A strong, fresh wind could definitely be felt, however, since four other filmmakers won prizes for the very first time in this most beautiful global showcase of the 7th art. The perfect example of this is Finland’s Juho Kuosmanen who tied to win the Grand Prize for Compartment No. 6 [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Juho Kuosmanen
film profile
]
(only his second feature film), alongside Israel’s Nadav Lapid, who scooped the Jury Prize, joint-first, for Ahed’s Knee [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Nadav Lapid
film profile
]
(a film also produced by France and Germany), Japan’s Ryusuke Hamaguchi, who won a trophy for the screenplay behind Drive My Car, and France’s Leos Carax whose talent has finally been recognised by way of the Best Direction trophy for Annette [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
. We can add Norway’s Joachim Trier to this list, by way of the Best Actress accolade won by his compatriot Renate Reinsve for her performance in The Worst Person in the World [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joachim Trier
film profile
]
, alongside Australia’s Justin Kurzel, thanks to the Best Actor award won by America’s Caleb Landry Jones for Nitram.

Only two filmmakers featuring on the winners list have previously scooped prizes in competition: Iran’s Asghar Farhadi, who was honoured with the Grand Prize “ex aequo” for A Hero [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Asghar Farhadi
film profile
]
, and Thailand’s Apichatpong Weerasethakul, who tied to win the Jury Prize for Memoria [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
. Both of these films were co-produced by Europe.

Last but not least, Croatia’s Antoneta Alamat Kusijanovic bagged herself the Caméra d'Or (awarded to the best first film across all categories) by way of Murina [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Antoneta Alamat Kusijanović
film profile
]
, which was presented in the Directors’ Fortnight.

The awards:

Palme d'Or
Titane [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Julia Ducournau, Vincent Li…
film profile
]
- Julia Ducournau (France/Belgium)

Grand Prix (ex aequo)
A Hero [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Asghar Farhadi
film profile
]
- Asghar Farhadi (Iran/France)
Compartment No.6 [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Juho Kuosmanen
film profile
]
- Juho Kuosmanen (Finland/Estonia/Germany/Russia)

Best Director
Leos Carax - Annette [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
(France/Germany/Belgium/Switzerland/Mexico/Japan)

Best Actress
Renate Reinsve - The Worst Person in the World [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Joachim Trier
film profile
]
(Norway/France/Sweden/Denmark)

Best Actor
Caleb Landry Jones - Nitram (Australia)

Best Screenplay
Drive My Car - Ryusuke Hamaguchi (Japan)

Jury Prize (ex aequo)
Ahed's Knee [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Nadav Lapid
film profile
]
- Nadav Lapid (Israel/France/Germany)
Memoria [+see also:
film review
trailer
film profile
]
- Apichatpong Weerasethakul (Colombia/Thailand/UK/Mexico/France/Germany/China/Taiwan/USA/Switzerland)

Caméra d'Or
Murina [+see also:
film review
trailer
interview: Antoneta Alamat Kusijanović
film profile
]
- Antoneta Alamat Kusijanovic (Croatia/Brazil/USA/Slovenia)

Palme d'Or for Best Short Film
All the Crows in the World - Tang Yi (Hong Kong)
Special Mention
August Sky - Jasmin Tenucci (Brazil/Iceland)

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