Cannes Film Fesitval’s jury president Spike Lee appeared to inadvertently lift the lid on this year’s Palme d’Or winner – naming Julia Ducournau’s Titane – after a mix-up early in tonight’s closing awards ceremony.
The event’s hostess appeared to ask Lee, in French, if he could reveal the “first prize” of the evening. Instead of reading that as the chronological first prize, Lee seemed to take it as ‘first place’, going on to say Titane had scooped the Palme.
Confusion reigned and the hostess attempted to resolve the situation by swiftly moving on to the prize that was supposed to be revealed at that moment – best actor for Nitram’s Caleb Landry Jones. Lee then urged her to speak to him in English to avoid any further mix-ups, drawing plenty of laughter from the attending audience.
As you’d expect, Twitter blew up with those attending the ceremony remarking on the error and drawing comparisons to the 2017 Oscars finale, when Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway mistakenly announced La La Land as the Best Picture winner when it was in fact Moonlight.
While the premature unveiling was unfortunate, it won’t detract from the fact that this is a historic Palme winner – with Ducournau becoming only the second female to take the prize and the first since Jane Campion did so with The Piano 28 years ago.