After police interrogation following his proclamations at the press conference for Melancholia at Cannes, Danish director Lars von Trier says he will now concentrate on his film work.
Early afternoon Danish filmmaker Lars von Trier was interrogated by police in northern Sealand, Denmark, concerning an accusation by the local prosecutor in Grasse, France, that he has violated French legislation against glorifying war crimes by his proclamations at the press conference following the screening of his latest feature, Melancholia, at the Cannes Film Festival in May.
“Due to these serious accusations I have realized that I do not possess the skills to express myself unequivocally and I have therefore decided from this day forth to refrain from all public statements and interviews,” said Danish director Lars von Trier in a press statement issued today.
His statements in Cannes included:
”… but then I found out I was actually a Nazi. My family were German. And that also gave me some pleasure. What can I say? I understand Hitler … I sympathise with him a bit. Now how can I get out of this sentence? OK, I’m a Nazi,” were some of his remarks at the Palais des Festivals, which the following day made festival declare him persona non grata, effective immediately.
von Trier, whose Cannes entry garnered US lead actress Kirsten Dunst award for Best Actress, later retracted his pronouncement at the press conference, later again disclaimed his retraction. The boycott of the film announced at the festival never materialised – “in fact, the only consequence of his, say ’unfortunate statements’, was that the Argentine distributor backed out of our contract, but then we sold the film to somebody else,” recalled his producer Peter Aalbæk Jensen, of Zentropa Entertainments.
Aalbæk Jensen is currently packaging von Trier’s next, the $9-10 million Nymphomania, which he will shoot from next summer with Swedish actor Stellan Skarsgård (also in Melancholia) in the cast. The depiction of a woman’s sexual life from birth until she is 50 will allegedly be edited in two versions - one with hardcore sex scenes, the other softer for television. ”As a culture radical I can hardly explore a woman’s sexual development without a graphic depiction of intercourse - an actual penetration,” von Trier explained.