Lars von Trier is officially being welcomed back to the Cannes Film Festival. Thierry Frémaux has confirmed von Trier will return to the festival for the first time since 2011’s “Melancholia” with his serial killer drama “The House That Jack Built.” The film will debut in the Out of Competition section, which means it won’t be eligible for the Palme d’Or. Von Trier was named a “persona non grata” (aka. unwelcome at the festival) after he made comments referencing Nazism during the “Melancholia” press conference.
“The House That Jack Built” tracks the origin of a serial killer, played by Matt Dillon. The script is set in the 1970s and follows Jack through the five murders that define his development as a killer. Jack’s victims are played by Uma Thurman, Siobhan Fallon Hogan, Sofie Gråbøl, and Riley Keough.
Von Trier has a long history with Cannes. He’s competed for the Palme d’Or nine times with “The Element of Crime” (1984), “Europa” (1991), “Breaking the Waves” (1996), “The Idiots” (1998), “Dancer in the Dark” (2000), “Dogville” (2003), “Manderlay” (2005), “Antichrist” (2009), and “Melancholia” (2011). “Europa” and “Waves” both won the Grand Jury Prize, while “Dancer” earned the Palme. Trier’s 2014 drama “Nymphomaniac” premiered at the Berlin Film Festival since the director was not welcome at Cannes.
Cannes’ decision to allow von Trier to return to the festival follows a claim made by Björk last October that the director sexually harassed her and was emotionally abusive to her on the set of “Dancer in the Dark.” Trier has denied Björk’s allegation. The director’s production company, Zentropa, was also the subject of multiple sexual harassment and abuse claims last year.
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The Cannes Film Festival runs May 8-19. Watch the teaser announcement for “Jack” below.