The French film Dheepan won director Jacques Audiard the Palme d'Or prize, the top honor, at the 68th annual Cannes Film Festival.
Dheepan is about a group of Sri Lankan refugees who pretend to be a family in order to flee their war-torn country for a housing project in France.
Auidard described winning the award as 'exceptional.'
The second-place prize, the Grand Prix, went to first-time Hungarian director László Nemes for his Holocaust drama Son of Saul.
And 68-year-old Taiwanese filmmaker Hou Hsiao-Hsien won best director for his martial arts drama The Assassin.
In the best actress category, the prize was split between American actress Rooney Mara for her role in Todd Hayne's Carol and French actress Emmanuelle Bercot in French director MaJiwenn Besco's Mon Roi.
Best actor was awarded to French actor Vincent Lindon for The Measure of a Man by French director Stéphane Brizé. In the film, he plays a man struggling to make a living after a long period of unemployment.