Golden Palm


July 5, 2022

The Golden Palm (French: Palme d'or) is the highest prize of the Cannes festival, which is awarded to the winning work of the feature film competition of the official selection. The award can be received by the film's director as the highlight of the awards gala.


Until 1954, the main prize was awarded under the name "Grand Prize of the International Film Festival". At its meeting at the end of 1954, the festival's organizing committee decided that instead of the previous Grand Prix, which recognized the director rather than the film, and which was always created by a young contemporary painter or sculptor, a golden palm branch would be presented at the film screening held on the 60th anniversary of the invention of film. to the creators of the best film. The idea comes from the coat of arms motif of the city of Cannes. The organizers launched a tender for the most famous jewelers, which Lucienne Lazon won. The jeweler asked her sculptor friend Sébastien to draw the palm branch. (The legend that still lives today, which attributes the design of the palm branch to Jean Cocteau, is incorrect.) The Golden Palm, which has become the festival's logo, has changed a bit over the years. The first version was a vertical palm branch, the end of which was cut obliquely in the shape of a heart. The 24-karat gold branch is placed on a terracotta plinth made by Sébastien. The shape of the base was first rounded, then it became more and more square, until it finally became pyramidal from 1984. For the prize, a red box was made from the skin of the extremely rare white red deer. In 1992, Thierry de Bourqueney redrew the palm branch and the base, which from then on became polished crystal. In 1997, Caroline Scheufele, the president of the Swiss jewelry company Chopard, modernized the Palm, which the company has delivered free of charge every year since then. The 24-carat Gold Palm is made by pouring 40 working hours by hand from a wax mold, and then it is placed on a polished crystal cushion. The completed masterpiece is placed in a blue leather jewelry holder. Until 1963, the Palme d'Or was awarded nine times. In 1964, the organizers of the festival decided to - keeping the palm branch - award the best film again as the Grand Prize, and from 1969, the Festival's International Grand Prize. From 1975 to the present day, the best works are again awarded with the Golden Palm. Despite all of this, virtually all of the Cannes main prizes awarded go by the name Arany Pálma. In 1997 - at the 50th festival - a special jury reviewed the competition films of the past half century in order to select one of the directors of outstanding works that never won the Golden Palm to receive the Palm of the Palms. The prize was awarded to Ingmar Bergman. In the artist's absence, his daughter Linn Ullmann accepted the award, in the presence of twenty-eight Golden Palm directors. After that, the management of the festival also occasionally awarded lifetime achievement awards, with various names, but in 2011 they made it regular. See Honorable Palm.

Awarding of the award

During the history of the festival, the Golden Pálma has been awarded several times along with other important awards (best direction award, best female and male performance, etc.). In the early 2000s, the management of the festival decided that, in addition to the Grand Prize and the award for best arrangement, the Golden Palm should not be accompanied by another significant award. In the same way, two works cannot be awarded as winners. The restriction applies only to the awards of the official selection, not to those with which films from several sections can be recognized (Golden Camera, FIPRESCI award, ecumenical jury award). Since the establishment of the award, a woman has received the Golden Palm twice: in 1993, Jane Campion, and in 2021, Julia Ducournau. In 2013, the history of the festival