JULY - AUGUST 2011:

08.18.11

button_box.gif (205 bytes)One of the biggest arthouse films of the year will be available in your living room first before you can see it on the big screen. Thatís right, Lars Von TrierĎs MELANCHOLIA will go digital on October 7th before getting a limited theatrical release on November 11th. In the meantime, it will be screened at the Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF) next month with screenings on September 10th and 17th. It comes as no surprise that Stellan has accepted the lead role in von Trier's upcoming porn film "The Nymphomaniac". Rather than resemble your traditional hardcore porn film, it will be an artistic von Triersk interpretation of the essence of erotism.  The story focuses on a woman's life from birth until the age of 50 and the plan is to start production next summer. According to Stellan, von Trier called and said, "Stellan, my next movie is a porn movie, and I want you to play the lead." However, shortly after, von Trier added that there would be no intercourse scenes (though I'm sure we'll see some of our star's private parts... as usual...). Dazed Digital had a chance to interview Stellan regarding his working relationship with the "Melancholia" director.

What is Lars Von Trier like to work with on set?
SS: It's like playing. You feel extremely free and safe and it's a kind of family feeling you have when you work with Lars. It's kind of amazing. And he doesn't say much. Usually he doesn't say anything. You just start and maybe after a couple of takes, he says can we try something else, another attitude or another take on the scene, but not much. And it's that freedom that he gives the actors that brings so much life into it.

Did he talk about his inspirations for the film?
SS: He doesnít discuss really his sources. And you donít need it as an actor. The performance wouldnít be better if I know heís thinking of Tarkovsky. We donít have those discussions. Itís not a very intellectual process when you shoot with him. Itís more faithful. It's like kids playing, inventing things together.

What did you think when you first saw the film?
SS: I suspected  a little when we were shooting, such as "Ah, this is going to be pretty beautiful, isnít it?" And I accused him of doing a too-sweet picture - "Why are you Antonioni-ing it?" He was worried about that himself, that it would become too elegant, too beautiful, too romantic. But I think it has this classical quality of a sweet, beautiful sadness that you find in some art.

Kirsten Dunst gives an impressive central performanceÖ
SS: I think Kirsten does something absolutely wonderful in this film, and it's all in her eyes. You could see it when she was acting on set. I knew she was good but I didnít know she was that good. Itís very subtle.

What do you make of the Von Trier controversy at the press conference in Cannes?
SS: I think it's absolutely silly. Everyone knows that he's not a Nazi. He was a Jew until he was 33 years old. He got stuck in a joke that he couldn't get out of and he forgot to have a punch line and instead he kept on talking. People have a problem differentiating words and the meaning of the words, that's the problem. And I think we have bigger problems in the world than Lars Von Trier's lies!

During the making of the film, did you think about what you would do if faced with the end of the world?
SS: I donít knowÖ get on with my life to the last moments and have as much fun as possible!

08.13.11

The official web site has been launched for THE GIRL WITH THE DRAGON TATTOO. This is a very highly anticipated film and still very much shrouded in secrecy. Sony has revealed the 18 major players in the film with a headshot and biography blurb for each character. You can also watch the latest trailer with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross' score, their follow-up to "The Social Network's" Oscar-winning work. Love the music! Check it out here.

07.19.11

The Fantasia International Film Festival, which runs from July 14 to August 7th, has screened KONGEN AV BASTōY (aka King of Devil's Island). According to festival reviews, Stellan is without a doubt the only actor in the film known to North American audiences, but despite the billing, he's certainly not the lead. He does get a fair share of screen time as the warden. His performance is brilliant as always, but the film belongs to Benjamin Helstad and Kristoffer Joner. The film is quality all the way from the great performances to the gorgeous location photography of the prison, located near the fjords of Norway, to the richly effective score by Suzanne Bier regular, Johan SŲderqvist. It's a must see for anyone who appreciates truly stirring drama.

September 13th marks the date for the US DVD release of THOR by Paramount Home Entertainment. Stellan stars alongside Chris Hemsworth, Natalie Portman, Anthony Hopkins in this comic book adaptation directed by Kenneth Branagh. The film will be available on DVD, Blu-ray and Blu-ray 3D. The Blu-ray sets include ď80 minutes of immersive bonus materials including an exclusive special feature that goes deeper into the Marvel Universe, a sneak peek into Marvelís The Avengers, an unprecedented look inside the world of director Kenneth Branagh and much more.Ē The list of extras is as follows: commentary by director Kenneth Branagh, Marvel One-Shot: The Consultant, featurettes, Road to the Avengers, 11 deleted scenes with optional commentary, and trailers.