Film buffs have to wait until today for the Cannes Film Festival’s top prize, the Palme d’Or, but the real scene-stealers get their awards a day earlier – at the annual Palm Dog ceremony.
Britney, a standard poodle who stars in Riley Keough’s directorial debut War Pony, was crowned top dog this year, snagging the coveted gilded collar prize.
Britney, which plays a well-loved character called Beast, was unable to attend the ceremony, but two elaborately-coiffed poodles stood in to receive its prize.
Keough and co-director Gina Gammell accepted the award via pre-recorded video, saying that they were “so honoured”.
Dogs of all shapes and sizes – including a number of seasoned veterans of the popular event – flocked to the beach along the palm tree-lined Croisette in the southern French city to take in the ceremony, greeting fellow furry-haired friends with wagging tales and nose bumps, and breaking out into rounds of barking when the audience clapped.
Founded in 2001 by film journalist Toby Rose, the Palm Dog award honours to top dogs on the screen, with categories including jury prize and the so-called “Palm DogManitarian”, celebrating the bond between people and their canine companions.
This year’s dogmanitarian was Patron, a Jack Russell terrier in Kyiv which detects bombs with its nose.
Patron, which was also honoured with a medal by Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky earlier this month, was unable to travel to Cannes for its Palm Dog collar.
Luckily, lookalike Opium was on hand to accept the award in its place.
A new award was added this year, the Elvis Palm Hound Dog – a nod to Baz Luhrmann’s Elvis biopic, a top festival draw.
It went to Titane, a sharp-muzzled mutt with pointy ears.
Julieta with the Palm Dog award received on behalf of the dog named Beast in the film War Pony.
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