Cannes: 'Portrait of a Lady on Fire' Takes Queer Palm Prize

Portrait of a Lady on Fire-PORTRAIT DE LA JEUNE FILLE EN FEU-Publicity Still-H 2019
Cannes Film Festival

"The movie we chose to award for this 10th edition of the Queer Palm is not only a lesbian story but, above all, an incredible film for cinema," read a statement from the jury.

Céline Sciamma's Portrait of a Lady on Fire (Portrait de la jeune fille en feu) has been awarded this year's Queer Palm prize at Cannes. It is the first time the prize has gone to a female director. 

The jury was presided over by actress Virginie Ledoyen and composed of director Claire Duguet, comedian Kee-Yoon Kim, and directors Marcio Reolon and Filipe Matzembacher.

"The jury was struck by the director’s artistic mastering and deeply touched by the vision she brings upon artistic creation, [the] blazing heart of this film. We were also greatly moved by the sorority that inhabits this remarkable work: from the characters’ fate to the actresses achievement as well as the technical and artistic crew," the panel said upon awarding the honor.

This year is the tenth anniversary of the prize, launched by journalist Franck Finance-Madureira, which selects its winner from all LGBTQ-themed films across Cannes' official selection, Un Certain Regard sidebar, Directors’ Fortnight, Critics’ Week and the unofficial ACID section.

This year, 20 films were in competition, including Pedro Almodovar's Pain and Glory, starring Antonio Banderas and Penelope Cruz; Ira Sachs' Frankie, starring Isabelle Huppert, Marisa Tomei and Greg Kinnear; and the Elton John biopic Rocketman, starring Taron Egerton.

Xavier Dolan's Matthias and Maxime and Arnaud Desplechin's Oh Mercy! were also in the running, along with Danielle Lessovitz's Port Authority, which was produced by Martin Scorsese.

Dan Krauss and Paul Haggis' AIDS documentary 5B, produced by Priyanka Chopra, was the sole non-fiction film eligible.