Courtesy of the official Cannes Film Festival website, winners from all major categories of this year's often contentious event reflect upon the moment their professional lives changed forever...
Michael Haneke, winner of the Palme d'or for Love (Amour) (pictured, above, with stars Emmanuelle Riva and Jean-Louis Trintignant).
The story I tell is based on the promise my wife and I made to each other: not to separate in a situation like the one in the film. We see that all the time and it is a widespread problem. I experienced it in my own family and that is what pushed me to make the film Love.
Matteo Garrone, winner of the Grand Prix for Reality (pictured, left)
I have not read much of what has been written. It was a surprise for me because I know there were many beautiful films. The Competition was tough but I am very happy because the Grand Prix will help the film to reach a wider audience.
Ken Loach, winner of the Jury Prize for The Angels' Share (La part des anges) (pictured, right)
We realized that if we spent time with people like the ones in the film, they have such optimism that it makes us happy. To speak truthfully about things, you have to present them in the form of comedy.
Cristian Mungiu, Best Screenwriter for Beyond the Hills (Dupa Dealuri) (pictured, left)
I am very happy to have this award, a little surprised because it is the longest film in the Competition. I kept on changing the dialogues, the actresses helped me a lot, we tried to give it a continuity.
Carlos Reygadas, Best Director for Post Tenebras Lux
My work comes from the desire to create, to share, to find fraternity in the world with you. I was asked if I was not sad because many people did not like my film. For many filmmakers, the goal is to please. That is not my goal. Mine is to be able to express myself with absolute freedom and to be able to leave someone with something.
Mads Mikkelsen, Best Actor (pictured, left)
It was a big moment for me and for the film. One cannot be a good actor in a mediocre film. During my stay, I didn't have a chance to see other films, but there is a lot of work to do in Cannes! Put me in the Jury and I will come to see films!
Cosmina Stratan and Cristina Flutur, Best Actress in Dupa Dealuri (Beyond The Hills) (pictured, above)
The rhythm is different in film; after two months of shooting, here we are with this award, it’s incredible.
Benh Zeitlin, winner of the Caméra d’or for Beasts Of the Southern Wild (pictured, right)
For almost everyone who contributed to the film, it was their first film. We had worked very hard on small projects, short films in the past. We wanted to make this with friends, as a family. You never know, when you make a film, that success could come like this.
The Cinéfondation and Short Film Jury headed by Jean-Pierre Dardenne and including Arsinée Khanjian, Karim Aïnouz, Emmanuel Carrère and Yu Lik-Wai, has awarded the 2012 Cinéfondation Prizes during a ceremony held in the Buñuel Theatre, followed by the screening of the winning films.
First Prize: Dorogno Na (The Road to), directed by Taisia Igumentseva, VGIK, Russia
Second Prize: Abigail, directed by Matthew James Reilly, NYU, USA
Third Prize: Los Anfitriones (The Hosts), directed by Miguel Angel Moulet, EICTV, Cuba