Polish director Andrzej Wajda won the Palme d'Or in 1981 with Man Of Iron, but he says winning the Special Jury prize in 1957 for Kanal made him a European director overnight. 'I couldn't believe Cannes would notice an unknown young directorand a film from Poland which presented viewers an unknown episode from the Warsaw Uprising. It still amazes me,' he says. Wajda has been in Competition at Cannes a further five times.

How did you celebrate'
We were a poor delegation from behind the Iron Curtain and the fact that I found myself in the magnificent Martinez hotel overlooking the blue sea was attraction enough.

How did it affect your career' Did it make it easier to attract funding'
This wasn't my problem - I didn't want to emigrate... You must bear in mind that in the Polish film industry, money was not a problem - the problem was the censor's office and whether they'd accept the film.

Where do you keep your Palme d'Or'
At the Jagiellonian University Museum in Krakow, along with a Golden Lion, a Silver Bear and an Oscar.

To whom would you give an all-time Palme d'Or'
Undoubtedly it should go to someone old, and from among the great there is only one - Ingmar Bergman.

What have been the most important shifts in the industry during your career'
A camera preview monitor on the set. In the old times I used to stand next to the camera. These daysI hide somewhere from the actors and regret I don't look them in the eyes when they play in front of the camera.

How do you see the role of festivals changing'
There are certainly too many of them. I tell my students that in the old days it was a shame to return to Warsaw without a Palme d'Or. Now it is enough to get an award in Koszalin (a Polish film festival).

What are your hopes/fears for the future'
I fear something really worth seeing will happen somewhere in the world and I won't be there to see it.