The award adds to a successful run at the French cinema showcase for Asian films after Japanese director Hirokazu Kore-eda clinched the prestigious honour last year.

Director Bong Joon-ho, Palme d'Or award winner for his film
Director Bong Joon-ho, Palme d'Or award winner for his film "Parasite" (Gisaengchung), reacts on stage at the closing ceremony of Cannes Film Festival on May 25, 2019. (Reuters)

"Parasite", a suspenseful dark comedy about class struggles directed by South Korea's Bong Joon-ho, won the top Palme d'Or prize at the Cannes Film Festival on Saturday.

Bong, who made his mark at Cannes in 2017 with Netflix-produced "Okja", set his latest movie in modern South Korea.

It follows a down-on-their-luck family of four who spot an opportunity to con a wealthy household into giving them jobs.

They worm their way into the other family's lives - before things start going south.

This year's Cannes film festival also shone a light on newcomers, in an unusually crowded field.

"Atlantics", a ghost story about migrants directed by Franco-Senegalese filmmaker Mati Diop, won the runner-up Grand Prix award.

The movie, based on her 2009 short documentary, was Diop's first feature-length film.

Spain's Antonio Banderas won the male acting prize for his role as a tortured filmmaker in Pedro Almodovar's loosely biographical "Pain And Glory" - one of the films that had been tipped for the top honour.

Britain's Emily Beecham was crowned best actress after starring in Jessica Hausner's "Little Joe" as a botanist who starts having doubts about her latest genetically-modified creation when it begins to affect her loved ones.

Following is a list of the prize-winners at the 72nd Cannes film festival

Palme d’Or: "Parasite" by Bong Joon-ho (South Korea)

Grand Prix: "Atlantics" by Mati Diop (France)

Jury Prize: "Les Miserables" by Ladj Ly (France) and "Nighthawk" by Kleber Mendonca Filho (Brazil) 

Best director: Jean-Pierre and Luc Dardenne (Belgium) for "Young Ahmed"

Best actress: Emily Beecham (Britain) for "Little Joe"  

Best actor: Antonio Banderas (Spain) for "Pain and Glory"  

Special mention: "It Must Be Heaven" by Elia Suleiman 

Best screenplay: "Portrait of a Lady on Fire" by Celine Sciamma (France)

Source: TRTWorld and agencies