The 2017 Cannes Film Festival is now in the history books. Before officially closing, prizes were handed out for prestigious film festival, this year celebrating its 70th anniversary, offering some genuine surprises. This year’s jury was headed by Oscar-winning filmmaker Pedro Almodóvar (whose Julieta played Cannes last year) and closed this year’s outing by handing out the top prize – the Palme d’Or – to Ruben Östlund’s The Square. Other winners included Sofia Coppola, Joaquin Phoenix, Diane Kruger and a special 70th Anniversary Award was bestowed to Nicole Kidman, who appeared in competition titles The Beguiled and The Killing of a Sacred Deer, the second season of Top of the Lake and midnight special screener How to Talk to Girls at Parties.
A late entry into Cannes competition this year – and reportedly still being tinkered in the editing room – it was a surprising choice consider the experimental, 142-minute art world satire sparked a divided reaction among critics and festivalgoers. The film marks the English-language debut of Swedish filmmaker Östlund, who made a splash internationally a few years ago with the insightful comedy Force Majeure, and features the talents of Claes Bang, Dominic West, Elisabeth Moss and Terry Notary. Considering the off-kilter feature polarized critics, the film wasn’t expected to reach consensus among the Cannes jury, which consisted of Toni Erdmann director Maren Ade, Jessica Chastain, Will Smith, Fan Bingbing, Agnès Jaoui, Park Chan-wook, Paolo Sorrentino and Gabriel Yared.
Sofia Coppola, who won an Oscar for penning the 2003 hit Lost in Translation, picked up the Best Director prize for The Beguiled. Coppola, who was last in competition eleven years ago for Marie Antoinette, in doing so became only the second female director in Cannes history to win the prize – the first being Russian director Yuliya Solnsteva for The Story of the Flaming Years back in 1961. To date, only one woman has won the Palme d’Or – Jane Campion for The Piano. While Joaquin Phoenix won the Best Actor prize for his work in Lynne Ramsay’s You Were Never Really Here and Diane Kruge took the Best Actress prize for her performance in Fatih Akin’s In the Fade.
The Grand Prix (second place) and the Jury Prize (third place) went to what were considered the top consensus titles playing in competition: BPM (Beats Per Minute), a French feature centering on 90s-era AIDS activists from director Robin Campillo (co-writer of the 2008 Palme d’Or winner The Class) and Loveless, a Russian drama from Andrey Zvyagintsev, whose 2014 film Leviathan won a screenplay prize at Cannes and earned an Oscar nomination for Best Foreign Film. BPM was sold to The Orchard is expected to release stateside later this year, while Sony Pictures Classics picked up Loveless.
The Cannes jury bucked tradition by awarding a tie in the Best Screenplay category with The Lobster creators Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou winning for The Killing of a Sacred Deer along with Ramsay for You Were Never Really Here. Typically rules state that competition films can only win one prize while Ramsay’s title won two.
Wonderstruck (from Todd Haynes), Happy End (from Michael Haneke) and Good Time (from the Safdie Brothers) all missed out from taking home any awards despite some favorable early reviews and considerable profiles. Also missing from the awards actions were Okja and The Meyerowitz Stories, the first competition entries from streaming giant Netflix. The streaming service generated some controversy before the festival started and offered an ongoing argument for Cannes on whether or not films that buck the traditional theatrical model should play the august Cannes. Notably, both films earned strong reviews.
Full list of winners below:
- PALME d’OR: The Square – directed by Ruben Östlund
- GRAND PRIX: (BPM) Beats Per Minute – directed by Robin Campillo
- JURY PRIZE: Loveless – directed by Andrey Zvyagintsev
- BEST DIRECTOR: Sofia Coppola, The Beguiled
- BEST ACTOR: Joaquin Phoenix, You Were Never Really Here
- BEST ACTRESS: Diane Kruger, In the Fade
- BEST SCREENPLAY: (tie) The Killing of a Sacred Deer – Yorgos Lanthimos and Efthimis Filippou; You Were Never Really Here – Lynne Ramsay
- 70th ANNIVERSARY AWARD: Nicole Kidman
- CAMERA d’OR: Jeune femme – directed by Léonor Serraille
- SHORT FILM PALME d’OR: Xiao Cheng Er Yue – directed by Qiu Yang
- SHORT FILM SPECIAL MENTION: Katto – directed by Qiu Yang
- GOLDEN EYE DOCUMENTARY PRIZE: Faces Places – directed by Agnès Varda
- ECUMENICAL PRIZE: Radiance – directed by Naomi Kawase
UN CERTAIN REGARD
- UN CERTAIN REGARD AWARD: A Man of Integrity – directed by Mohammad Rasoulof
- BEST DIRECTOR: Taylor Sheridan, Wind River
- JURY PRIZE: April’s Daughter – directed by Michel Franco
- BEST PERFORMANCE: Jasmine Trinca, Fortunata
- AWARD FOR POETRY OF CINEMA: Mathieu Amalric, Barbara
- ART CINEMA AWARD: The Rider – directed by Chloe Zhao
- SOCIETY OF DRAMATIC AUTHORS AND COMPOSERS PRIZE: (tie) Lover for a Day – Philippe Garrel; Let the Sunshine In – Claire Denis
- EUROPA’S CINEMAS LABEL: A Ciambra – directed by Jonas Carpignano
- GRAND PRIZE: Makala – directed by Emmanuel Gras
- VISIONARY PRIZE: Gabriel and the Mountain – directed by Fellipe Barbosa
- SOCIETY OF DRAMATIC AUTHORS AND COMPOSERS PRIZE: Ava – directed by Léa Mysius
- COMPETITION: BPM (Beats Per Minute) – directed by Robin Campillo
- UN CERTAIN REGARD: Closeness – directed by Kantemir Balagov
- DIRECTOR’S FORTNIGHT: The Nothing Factory – directed by Pedro Pinho