Director Von Trier questioned over Hitler remarks

Wed Oct 5, 2011 4:09pm EDT
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COPENHAGEN (Reuters) - Director Lars Von Trier said he was questioned on Wednesday by Danish police for possibly breaking French law when he joked about Nazis and Hitler at the Cannes film festival in May.

In a statement, the controversial 55-year-old added that he would not make any more public statements or give interviews.

"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," he said.

The acclaimed film maker's remarks during a press conference in Cannes prompted the festival to expel him, an unprecedented move that could severely hamper his attempts to finance and make movies in the future.

Documents obtained by Reuters showed that a French court had asked Danish authorities to question Von Trier as part of a preliminary investigation into whether he had incited racial hatred.

It is not believed that he has been charged, although his own statement mentioned "charges made by the prosecution of Grasse in France from August 2011 regarding a possible violation of prohibition in French law against justification of war crimes."

The Danish police spokesman familiar with the issue was not immediately available for comment late on Wednesday.


The award-winning director of films like "Breaking the Waves," "Dancer in the Dark" and "Antichrist" had been a favorite in Cannes before his remarks made during a press conference to promote his latest picture "Melancholia."   Continued...

<p>Director Lars Von Trier poses during an interview with Reuters in Mougins May 21, 2011. REUTERS/Yves Herman</p>