We haven’t heard much from Ruben Östlund since “Force Majeure” earned him a prize at Cannes and a Golden Globe nomination, but the Swedish helmer has been busy. Variety has a new interview with Östlund about “The Square,” his English-language debut, which co-stars Dominic West alongside Elisabeth Moss and Claes Bang. In it, he assures us that “I’m making fun of everyone” in his upcoming film.
“I’m very thorough in that way. No one escapes from this satiric approach,” Östlund continues. About an American artist (West) exhibiting his latest installation project, “The Square” is expected to premiere at Cannes in May. Asked about the film’s connection to his earlier work, Östlund says that “the movies are quite different from each other. But when you see the scenes, it’s so obvious that I’m always working with comedic situations: situational comedy that brings out topics of human behavior, how we react as ‘herd animals,’ things like this.”
“When foreign actors come to a small country like Sweden,” Östlund says of West and Moss, “they don’t know what they’re getting into, and if you give them too much attention, then I think that maybe it is hard to follow your mission with everything. It was key for me to not give them more attention than any other actor.” This resulted in something of a learning curve, it seems: “I must say that both Elizabeth Moss and Dominic West were quite lost in the beginning of shooting, but then they found a way to do it. They were not used to this way of working.”
Read the full interview — which includes the Tinder-like idea Östlund had for “Passengers,” which he wanted to direct himself — here.