If he was indeed joking, Lars Von Trier needs to work a bit on his act, not to mention the material. The notoriously difficult Danish director shocked the crowd at France’s Cannes Film Festival on Wednesday by proclaiming, during a panel about his new film, “Melancholia,” “I understand Hitler, but I think he did some wrong things, yes. … But I understand much about him, and I sympathize with him a little bit.”

And that wasn’t all he said, as the clip below shows. Cannes officials responded by banning Von Trier from the festival, despite his attempts to apologize. –KA


The 55-year-old is a previous winner of the festival’s Palme d’Or award and is renowned for courting controversy.

The festival said it had been “disturbed” by the 55-year-old’s comments and had asked him to “provide an explanation”.

“The director states that he let himself be egged on by a provocation,” its initial statement read.

“The festival is adamant that it would never allow the event to become the forum for such pronouncements on such subjects.”

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