Michael Haneke’s Amour today took the Palme d’Or prize for Best Film at the finale to this year’s Cannes Film Festival. A hugely popular win at today’s ceremony as well as its premiere, the intimate drama about an elderly couple confronting the end of life was Haneke’s second win in three years. He won in 2009 for White Ribbon. Haneke and his actors on stage Jean Louis Trintignant and Emmanuele Riva received a huge standing ovation. The five American entries were shut out of the top awards — last year’s winner was the single U.S. entry, Terrence Malick’s The Tree Of Life, and all this year’s were foreign-language films. FULL ANALYSIS and interviews with the jury coming.

Cosmina Stratan and Christina Flutor shared the Best Actress prize for Çristian Mungiu’s Beyond The Hills. Mungiu also was awarded the prize for best screenplay for Beyond The Hills, which was a rare case in which the jury honored one film with two awards. Mads Mikkelsen was named best actor for Jagten (The Hunt) directed by Thomas Vinterberg. Carlos Reygadas was named best director for Post Tenebras Lux. The Jury Prize went to Ken Loach’s The Angels’ Share. The ceremony began with the prize for Best Short Film going to Sezziz Be Deng (Silent) by L. Rezan Yesilbas.

This year’s Sundance Film Festival hit Beasts Of The Southern Wild, which screened in the Un Certain Regard sidebar event, was recognized with the Prix de Camera d’Or (Golden Camera) award for first film. Accepting the award, director Behn Zeitlin said it’s “not just my first film but also the first film of just about everyone who worked on it. You never know if you are going to be invited to dance in the temple but thank you. You changed everyone’s lives”.

(Photo of Riva, Haneke, Trintignant by Getty Images)