themes

Cannes’s Big Winners

Cannes’s Big Winners

Since its inception in 1946, cinephiles have counted on the Cannes Film Festival, the most prestigious annual film program in the world, to keep up with the medium’s most important artists and movements. Its star-studded red carpets and glorious French Riviera scenery may get as much attention as the carefully selected films in its competition showcases, but the true legacy of Cannes has always been the masterpieces that premiered there—and especially those that have emerged as winners. The festival’s top award was originally called the Grand Prix, and the trophy for it designed each year by a different artist. Then, beginning in 1955, it became the Palme d’Or, with a new trophy modeled after the city of Cannes’s coat of arms. (The festival continues to bestow a Grand Prix, although it’s a second-place honor now.) At Criterion, we’ve collected many titles that have won the festival’s highest award, hailing from many nations of the world, Russia (The Cranes Are Flying), Italy (The Leopard), Japan (Kagemusha), and the U.K. (If….) among them.