He entirely belongs to cinema and its finest works and legends: in 2019, the Festival de Cannes has decided to award Alain Delon with an Honorary Palme d’or to pay tribute to his wonderful presence in the history of film.
After Jeanne Moreau, Woody Allen, Bernardo Bertolucci, Jane Fonda, Clint Eastwood, Jean-Paul Belmondo, Manoel de Oliveira, Agnès Varda and Jean-Pierre Léaud, the Festival de Cannes is proud and delighted that the legendary actor who starred in Luchino Visconti’s The Leopard (Palme d’or, 1963) has accepted this honour from the international community.
“Pierre Lescure and I are delighted that Alain Delon has accepted to be honoured by the Festival,” says Thierry Frémaux, General Delegate. He hesitated for a long time, having long been reluctant to this Palme d’or because he thought he should only come to Cannes to celebrate the directors he had been working with.”
We’re talking about a giant, a living legend and a global icon. In Japan, where he is revered, he is even known as the Spring Samurai. More than 80 films, countless masterpieces and superlatives are testament to the artistic reach and international aura of a man who burst onto the scene in Purple Noon (1960), a crime film and ode to his incredible beauty. René Clément invented Delon in this film. A diamond in the rough, he was just 25 at the time.