Washington [US], July 19 (ANI): Cannes jury president and actor-director Spike Lee recently expressed regret for accidentally announcing the film festival's 2021 Palme d'Or winner ahead of schedule on Saturday during the closing ceremony.
The 64-year-old star mistakenly announced the winner of the top honour, the Palme d'Or, early in Saturday's ceremony, reported People magazine.
After a miscommunication with the host, French actor Toria Dillier, Lee prematurely revealed 'Titane' by French filmmaker Julia Ducournau as the recipient of this year's Palme d'Or.
Although the audience gasped at the mix-up and Lee was somewhat embarrassed, there were no hard feelings from Ducournau, who is only the second female filmmaker to ever earn the esteem, after Jane Campion's 'The Piano' won in 1993.
Lee later apologised, saying he "messed up, simple as that. And I was very specific to speak to the people of Titane ... I apologized, they said, 'Forget about it, Spike.' So, that means a lot to me."
His fellow jury member Maggie Gyllenhaal had his back, saying that the error "was like an injection of humanity into the middle of the ceremony," according to Deadline.
'Titane' focuses on a young woman who has an unusual relationship with cars after surviving an accident as a child. Although critics were divided on the film from the director of 'Raw', the jury -- which also consists of directors Mati Diop, Kleber Mendonca Filho, Jessica Hausner, actors Melanie Laurent, Tahar Rahim, Song Kang-ho and singer/songwriter Mylene Farmer -- voted to award the film the top prize.
Lee almost rushed the announcement again later in the event, before Sharon Stone was scheduled to present the award.
"In 63 years of life I've learned that people get a second chance, this is my second chance," he prefaced.
He added, "I apologize for messing up. It took a lot of suspense out of the night I understand, it wasn't on purpose." Luckily, Dillier stopped him before Stone took the stage.
Lee was named jury president of the Cannes Film Festival last January, becoming the first Black person to head the prestigious panel.
"When I got the call...I was shocked, happy, surprised and proud all at the same time," Lee said at the time.
He added, "I'm honoured to be the first person of the African diaspora (USA) to be named President of the Cannes Jury and of a main film festival."
'Titane' is the second film to win the festival's top honour with a woman director in its 74-year history. (ANI)