And with no film in competition at this point either! It's an honorary award, and Variety has the story:
Clint Eastwood received an honorary Palme d’Or from Cannes festival toppers Gilles Jacob and Thierry Fremaux to celebrate “the talent of a grand master at the summit of his craft” at a private ceremony in Paris on Wednesday.
Eastwood, in France for the release of “Gran Torino,” has a long relationship with Cannes stretching back to 1985 when “Pale Rider” played in competition. He has returned to present “Bird,” “White Hunter Black Heart,” “Mystic River” and “Changeling.”
“When I made my first film 39 years ago, no one in the U.S. -- except for Roger Ebert who was always very enthusiastic -- believed in me as a filmmaker. But French cineastes have always been very supportive,” Eastwood told guests at a Paris restaurant. “France remains one of the rare countries that approaches cinema as an art form.”
Fremaux said of the honor, “In the U.S., they call this a lifetime achievement award, but in French the word achievement means ‘done’ and Clint Eastwood is far from being done. We’ll call it an ‘opening award.’ “
Fremaux said the fest gave the Palme d’Or to Eastwood on Wednesday because he won’t be able to attend Cannes this year.
-Just in case we thought he might have to go some time with no awards....check the Palme d'Or off his list.