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Lars von Trier’s Ban From Cannes May Be Coming to an End

Lars von Trier’s long banishment from the Cannes Film Festival — following his shocking comments about Hitler and the Nazis in 2011 — may soon be over, Cannes artistic director Thierry Fremaux suggested Tuesday.

In a radio interview in France, Fremaux said the welcome mat could be put out again for von Trier, which would pave the way for the controversial Danish director’s new film, “The House That Jack Built,” to join Cannes’ official lineup. Von Trier hasn’t been seen on the Croisette in seven years, since he astonished reporters at his “Melancholia” press conference by saying that Hitler did “some things wrong” but that he could “sympathize with him.” Afterward, the festival declared von Trier persona non grata.

Fremaux first hinted last week that von Trier and “The House That Jack Built” might come to Cannes. Fremaux is believed to be eager to secure the film, a serial-killer drama starring Uma Thurman, Bruno Ganz and Matt Dillon, for the new lineup.

On Tuesday, Fremaux told France’s Europe 1 radio station that Cannes president Pierre Lescure was working on removing von Trier’s person non grata label, “thinking that it’s perhaps time to make a place for him as a filmmaker again.” Fremaux declined to confirm categorically that it would happen, but suggested that an announcement could come soon.

IFC Films has landed U.S. rights for “The House That Jack Built.” Most European rights have also been snapped up.

Von Trier’s Zentropa production company sidelined co-founder Peter Aalbaek Jensen in December in the wake of sexual harassment allegations. Meanwhile von Trier was forced to deny allegations by singer Bjork that she had been harassed by “a Danish director” on the set of “Dancer in the Dark,” which he directed.

 

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