Winter Sleep: Nuri Bilge Ceylan’sTurkish Film Wins Top Award at 2014 Cannes Film Fest

Cannes Film Fest 2014–“Winter Sleep,” Nuri Bilge Ceylan’s sprawling (three hours plus) portrait of a self-absorbed Anatolian hotelier and his uneasy relationships with those around him, won the Palme d’Or at the 67th annual Cannes Film Fest on Saturday night.

Turkish Film

The Turkish auteur has won at the festival: He has twice received the Grand Prix, for “Distant” in 2002 and “Once Upon a Time in Anatolia,” in 2011, while he won best director for 2008′s “Three Monkeys.”

“Winter Sleep” is only the second film by a Turkish director to win the Palme, after Yilmaz Guney and Serif Goren’s “The Way” (1982).

“This is a great surprise for me,” Ceylan said when he took the stage, noting that 2014 marked the 100th anniversary of Turkish cinema. “I want to dedicate the prize to all the young people of Turkey, including those who lost their lives” over the past year, he said.

The Grand Prix was awarded to Alice Rohrwacher’s semi-autobiographical drama “The Wonders.”

Bennett Miller received the best director award for “Foxcatcher,” his drama about the complex psychological triangle involving Olympic wrestlers Mark and Dave Schultz and the Pennsylvania millionaire John du Pont “This is quite affirming, and I’m very grateful,” Miller said.

The actress prize went to Julianne Moore for her ferocious turn as a washed-up thesp in David Cronenberg’s Tinseltown satire “Maps to the Stars.” Moore was not present to accept at the ceremony.

Timothy Spall won the actor prize for his performance as the painter J.M.W. in Leigh’s “Mr. Turner.”

“I’ve spent a lot of time being a bridesmaid. This is the first time I’ve ever been a bride, so I’m quite pleased about that,” Spall said in a long, moving acceptance speech. Noting that “this is as much an accolade for Mr. Leigh as it is for me,” Spall reminisced about the time when Leigh’s “Secrets & Lies,” in which he also starred, won the Palme d’Or, at which time he was undergoing chemotherapy for leukemia. “I thank God that I’m still here and alive.”

Young and Old

The jury prize was awarded to two films from the competition’s youngest and oldest helmers, respectively: Xavier Dolan’s “Mommy” and Jean-Luc Godard’s “Goodbye to Language.” While Godard did not attend the festival, Dolan paid tribute to jury president Jane Campion in an emotional speech, citing her Palme d’Or-winning “The Piano” as one of the first and most influential films he watched as a teenager.

Camera dOr: Party Girl

The Camera d’Or for best first film was given to “Party Girl,” a three-way directing debut for French helmers Marie Amachoukeli, Claire Burger and Samuel Theis. The film, which opened the Un Certain Regard sidebar, had already received an ensemble acting prize the night before.


Palme d’Or: “Winter Sleep” (Nuri Bilge Ceylan, Turkey-Germany-France)

Grand Prix: “The Wonders” (Alice Rohrwacher)

Director: Bennett Miller, “Foxcatcher”

Actor: Timothy Spall, “Mr. Turner”

Actress: Julianne Moore, “Maps to the Stars”

Jury Prize: “Mommy” (Xavier Dolan) and “Goodbye to Language” (Jean-Luc Godard)

Screenplay: Andrey Zvyagintsev and Oleg Negin, “Leviathan”


Camera d’Or: “Party Girl” (Marie Amachoukeli, Claire Burger, Samuel Theis)

Short Films Palme d’Or: “Leidi” (Simon Mesa Soto)

Short Films Special Mention: “Aissa” (Clement Trehin-Lalanne)

Ecumenical Jury Prize: “Timbuktu” (Abderrahmane Sissako, Mauritania-France)


Un Certain Regard Prize: “White God” (Kornel Mundruczo, Hungary-Germany-Sweden)

Jury prize: “Force Majeure” (Ruben Ostlund, Sweden-France-Denmark-Norway)

Special Prize: “The Salt of the Earth” (Wim Wenders and Juliano Ribeiro Salgado, France-Italy)

Ensemble: “Party Girl” (Marie Amachoukeli, Claire Burger, Samuel Theis, France)

Actor: David Gulpilil, “Charlie’s Country” (Rolf de Heer, Australia)


Art Cinema Award: “Les Combattants” (Thomas Cailley, France)

Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers Prize: “Les Combattants”

Europa Cinemas Label: “Les Combattants”


Grand Prize: “The Tribe” (Myroslav Slaboshpytskiy, Ukraine)

Visionary Prize: “The Tribe”

Society of Dramatic Authors and Composers Prize: “Hope” (Boris Lojkine, France)


Competition: “Winter Sleep”

Un Certain Regard: “Jauja” (Lisandro Alonso, Denmark-U.S.-Argentina)

Directors’ Fortnight: “Les Combattants”