Canadian filmmaker Xavier Dolan returned to Montreal triumphant today, fresh off widespread kudos and a prize-winning weekend at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival.
Dolan, 25, debuted his fifth feature film Mommy in Cannes, where it earned a lengthy standing ovation, glowing reviews from international critics and, ultimately, shared in the festival's Jury Prize (with Goodbye to Language, the latest from French directing legend Jean-Luc Godard) at Saturday's closing awards gala.
The win confirmed "that we were right to fight for our ideas and that I was right to fight for who I was and who I wanted to be, no matter what," Dolan — who some have called the enfant terrible of the Quebec film scene — told reporters in Montreal at a press conference today.
In Mommy, Dolan returns to the theme of a difficult mother-son relationship, which he previously explored in his debut effort, 2009's J'ai Tué Ma Mère (I Killed My Mother), which also won a trio of awards in Cannes.
Actress Anne Dorval, who starred as the mothers in both Mommy and J'ai Tué Ma Mère, was alongside Dolan and shared stories of the mania at the French Riviera fest.
"People would see him and scream after him as if he was [rock star] Mick Jagger," she said of her young director.
The prolific Dolan, who has released five features in five years, said he never anticipated such a rapturous reception for Mommy.
He had hoped to lead a quieter life after Cannes, including returning to school and hanging out with people his own age. However, those plans could be put on hold with fresh commitments to promote Mommy as it rides its current wave of recognition.
And though the young actor, writer and director missed out on the festival's top prize (the Palme d'Or), he does have an eye on what could be coming next: landing U.S. distribution and perhaps even an Academy Award nomination down the road.