Chinese director Zhang Yimou picked up his life achievement award Wednesday at the 6th International Film Festival Kustendorf in Serbia.
"Before giving out the award, let me welcome here somebody who has transferred us from the 20th to the 21st century," said Festival founder, film director Emir Kusturica.
"I say this as Zhang has been directing the opening of the Olympic Games in Beijing 2008, and for me this is the moment when the art of 21st century has announced the new times."
Before screening his latest film The Flowers of War (2011), Zhang said "I believe the film festivals in the world should all be like this, a gathering of artists and with art loving young people. I am so glad I am here."
During the festival, Zhang will hold workshops for young film directors.
The seven-day Kustendorf film festival kicked off Wednesday at the Mecavnik town on Tara Mountain, some 230 km south of capital Belgrade, hosting international film stars, students and young filmmakers.
This year's Kustendorf festival will host 28 films and young authors from some 17 countries and regions.
Kusturica, a double Canes Film Festival Golden Palm winner himself, every year since 2008, awards three young film makers with Kustendorf prizes: Gold, Silver and Bronze Eggs for short film.