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Charlotte Gainsbourg Says She Thought Lars Von Trier’s ‘Nymphomaniac’ Was Just A Joke & Provocation At First

Charlotte Gainsbourg Says She Thought Lars Von Trier's 'Nymphomaniac' Was Just A Joke & Provocation At First

“My next film, and Kirsten [Dunst] demanded it, will be porn. That’s how women are. Really hard core. That’s what I’m writing now,” Lars von Trier told a Cannes Film Festival press conference back in 2011. We all had a good laugh, but here we are three years later with the director’s two part epic “Nymphomaniac” is already rolling out overseas and slated to open stateside this spring – and we weren’t the only ones who thought Lars was just fucking with us.

Continuing the promotional train, Zentropa Productions has unveiled the first official interview, a 12-minute conversation with Charlotte Gainsbourg, who plays the lead character Joe in the sex flick. The actress reveals that she too thought Lars was just being Lars when he announced the project. “The first time I heard anything, was [Lars] talking in Cannes, and I thought he was making a joke. We were doing an interview with Kirsten Dunst for ‘Melancholia,’ and he said, ‘My next film is a porn film with those two.’ [Laughs] I thought he was making fun, and it was quite funny,” she said. “And then much later on, I read the script.”

“I just thought it was a joke, and that it was a provocation,” Gainsbourg continued. “And I didn’t want to hope too much that he was going to ask. The big thing for me was that I was realizing he was asking me to do a third film, and it was such a blessing, and that’s the way I always thought about it. And I didn’t want to think about it too much in case it wasn’t true.”

Well it turned about to be true, with much of the talk around the film centering on its explicit, hardcore sex, much of it performed by porno body doubles. For Gainsbourg, that was crucial.  “I was very, very nervous at first. I needed it to be very clear that actors were not going to perform sex. As long as that was clear, I was fine.”

The end result? We’ll soon find out. “Nymphomaniac: Part One” opens in theaters on March 21, 2014, and will be available On Demand starting March 6, 2014. “Nymphomaniac: Part Two” will open in theaters on April 18, 2014 and will be available On Demand as of April 3, 2014. Watch the full interview below.

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Body double !!? Not at all we’ve seen the uncut version of the movie and anyone can tell you that it is her Charlotte Gainsbourg who is doing the sex. Ok she doesn’t look as if she is enjoying it but it is her. Come on you’ve done something (like taking two guys at same time) just own up to it. Its all for art isn’t it…


"I needed it to be very clear that actors were not going to perform sex. As long as that was clear, I was fine." I'm glad that was made clear to her, because for most of us, the film was originally promoted as having the actors actually performing the sex. Who the hell wants to see Shia Lebeuf with a digitally added dick?

Cathy Arc

This is not "the end result", the end result will be when people see that the movie is a flop! The end result will be when all the participants of this "Christmas provocation" get their "come-back". When their benedictory God (or Antichrist?) and a military extremist Lars Von "Tripper" will be officially called "The Worst Contemporary Director".


No, Lars wasn't just joking he is an asshole, indeed! No shame, no brain, no talent, only provocation, scandal and fracas and brawl! But The Worst Contemporary Director must justify his title and people's hopes! The film is senseless, boring, vulgar and unattractive, to put it mildly. The biggest disillusionment of the year, and no wonder!


No matter do the movie actors perform real sex or the doubles do it, real sex on screen is a real screen sex! It's just a porno, no matter the plot. Next time another director will say "I wanna comedy with real sex or action, why not if it's possible with drama!" and then we see only porno everywhere. It's the road to hell!


I'm surprised she's actually doing any promotion, given the dramatic death of her sister 3 weeks ago. She's not her direct self on this video.


It is a very good movie with a lot of sex scenes but nothing hardcore at all, it's all decent enough. So certain people better lower their expectations…


That was my reaction when I first heard about Nymphomaniac. I remember him joking about it in the Cannes press con and it really cracked me up especially about the "We don't give a shit about the dialogue." I think he said that it would be 3 hours and look now, it's 5 hours.

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