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Charlotte Gainsboug shares our new favorite Lars von Trier story

Charlotte Gainsboug shares our new favorite Lars von Trier story (photo)

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Before he recently decided never to speak in public again, director Lars von Trier had a habit of saying crazy and controversial things. You know all about the dustup at Cannes this year that led to his vow of silence, and all the many other stories over the years about his outrageousness. It seems that when you put a microphone in front of the guy, he just can’t help himself.

What we don’t know all about is what sort of guy von Trier is away from the microphones. That’s the guy I’m curious about. Is he equally wild and unpredictable on the set, or is he more quiet and thoughtful? What’s he like when he’s directing a movie? I put the question to two of the stars of his new movie “Melancholia,” which opens today in theaters and is currently available on demand. The response from Charlotte Gainsbourg, who had previously worked with LvT on “Antichrist,” is basically my new favorite Lars von Trier story.

“I loved working with him on ‘Antichrist,’ Gainsbourg told me. “It was incredible because it was the first time. For [‘Melancholia’] I remember going up to see him in Denmark, and I had my script filled with notes and questions. I opened my script, and he saw it was black with ink and he said ‘Oh, I think I’ll go and have a nap.’ He just went and slept the whole afternoon.”

Wait, he actually left and took a nap?


Yeah,” Gainsbourg continued. “He said ‘Feel free to sleep on my hammock if you want,’ and I did. We had dinner and it was fine. But I knew that I couldn’t ask any questions.”

See, I always heard directing was this super intense pursuit where you work 20 hours a day and you don’t see your family for weeks on end. You can direct and take naps during meetings? Apparently, I’m in the wrong field.

You can watch the video of Gainsbourg’s story below. And remember, actors: don’t ask Lars von Trier questions.

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What’s your favorite crazy Lars von Trier story? Tell us in the comments below or on Facebook and Twitter.

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The Best Of The Last

Portlandia Goes Out With A Bang

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The end is near. In mere days Portlandia wraps up its final season, and oh what a season it’s been. Lucky for you, you can watch the entire season right now right here and on the IFC app, including this free episode courtesy of Subaru.

But now, let’s take a moment to look back at some of the new classics Fred and Carrie have so thoughtfully bestowed upon us. (We’ll be looking back through tear-blurred eyes, but you do you.)

Couples Dinner

It’s not that being single sucks, it’s that you suck if you’re single.

Cancel it!

A sketch for anyone who has cancelled more appointments than they’ve kept. Which is everyone.

Forgotten America

This one’s a “Serial” killer…everything both right and wrong about true crime podcasts.

Wedding Planners

The only bad wedding is a boring wedding.

Disaster Hut

It’s only the end of the world if your doomsday kit doesn’t include rosé.

Catch up on Portlandia’s final episodes on demand and at

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Your Portlandia Personality Test

The New Portlandia Webseries Is Going Your Way

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Carrie and Fred understand that although we have so much in common, we’re each so beautifully unique and different. To help us navigate those differences, Portlandia has found an easy and honest way to embrace our special selves in the form of a progressive new traffic system: a specific lane for every kind of driver. It’s all in honor of the show’s 8th and final season, and it’s all presented by Subaru.

Ready to find out who you really are? Match your personality to a lane and hop on the expressway to self-understanding.

Lane 10: Trucks Piled With Junk

Your junk is falling out of your trunk. Shake a tail light, people — this lane is for you.

Lane 33: Twins

You’re like a Gemini, but waaaay more pedestrian. Maybe you and a friend just wear the same outfits a lot. Who cares, it’s just twinning enough to make you feel special.

Lane 27: Broken Windows

Bad luck follows you around and everyone knows it. Your proverbial seat is always damp from proverbial rain. Is this the universe telling you to swallow your pride? Yes.

Lane 69: Filthy Cars

You’re all about convenience. Getting your car washed while you drive is a no-brainer.

Lane 43: Newly Divorced Singles

It’s been a while since you’ve driven alone, and you don’t know the rules of the road anymore. What’s too fast? What’s too slow? Are you sending the right signals? Don’t worry, the breakdown lane is nearby if you need it.

Still can’t find a lane to match your personality? Check out all the videos here. And see the final season of Portlandia this spring on IFC.

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Last-Minute Holiday Gift Guide

Hits from the '80s are on repeat all Christmas Eve and Day on IFC.

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GIFs via Giphy, Photos via The Everett Collection

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