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Haneke's 'White Ribbon' Wins Top Prize at Cannes

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May 24, 2009 | 3:31pm EDT

Austrian filmmaker Michael Haneke has walked away with the top honor at this year's Cannes Film Festival for his drama The White Ribbon.

The film -- about residents in a small German town riddled with tragedy as World War I approaches -- was awarded with the Palme d'Or (Golden Palm) at the annual prize-giving ceremony in the French Riviera on Sunday.

Quentin Tarantino's war film Inglourious Basterds also triumphed, with Christoph Waltz winning in the Best Actor category for his role as a Colonel Hans Landain.

Meanwhile, English/French star Charlotte Gainsbourg won the Best Actress statue for her role in Danish director Lars von Trier's drama Antichrist.

Veteran French filmmaker Alain Resnais, 86, was also awarded a special prize for his half-century career. Resnais delighted critics with Les Herbes Folles (Wild Grasses), a romantic comedy starring Sabine Azema and Andre Dussolier and the director's his first movie to compete at the festival in almost 30 years.

The jury at the 62nd Cannes Film Festival was headed by French actress Isabelle Huppert.

The main list of winners is as follows:

Palme d'Or (Golden Palm) - The White Ribbon by Michael Haneke (Austria)

Grand Prize - The Prophet by Jacques Audiard (France)

Jury Prize - Fish Tank by Andrea Arnold (Britain) and Thirst by Park Chan-wook (South Korea)

Special Prize - Alain Resnais

Best Director - Brillante MendozaKinatay (The Philippines)

Best Actor - Christoph Waltz, Inglourious Basterds (United States)

Best Actress - Charlotte Gainsbourg, Antichrist (Denmark)

Best Screenplay - Feng MeiSpring Fever (China)

Camera d'Or (first-time director) - Samson and Delilah by Warwick Thornton (Australia)

Best short film - Arena by Joao Salaviza (Portugal)

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