It could be said that Lars von Trier’s films have driven people to drink, because of the way that they push the envelope of dark, depressing human emotion. But now the director of Melancholia, Dogville and two Nymphomaniac films has revealed that alcohol cures his anxiety, which allows him to make those films. Ah, the bizarre circle of creativity and life.
While speaking with The Guardian, Lars Von Trier admitted to attending AA meetings for the better part of a year and a half, but revealed that she has started drinking again "so that I can work." As he elaborates:
When you shoot a film, it’s hard work, and you tend to drink more. … I’ve taken other drugs that helped me a lot – that was kind of the way I worked. But drinking is more to overcome some anxiety.
It’s one of the least controversial statement to come out of Lars von Trier’s mouth. This is a candid filmmaker who frequently shocks with his statements every time that a microphone is placed in front of his mouth. In the past, von Trier has been banned from the Cannes Film Festival for making tasteless comments about Nazis. He has unnerved audiences with graphic talk about hardcore sex – while also exploring the issue in his movies. And he swore off doing interviews a while back. Though, since we’re now writing about an interview Von Trier did with the Guardian, he seems to have reversed his opinion on speaking with the media.
The thing about Von Trier, though, is that when he is focused, he has the ability to make brilliant, beautiful movies. The director challenged the obstacles that stand in a storyteller’s way in The Five Obstructions. He pushed his female leads in Dancer in the Dark, Dogma and Breaking The Waves. And while I feel he is starting to lose focus in later movies, like the Nymphomaniac films, he’s still capable of greatness. Perhaps alcohol will calm his nerves and get him back on track?
At the moment, Lars Von Trier is working on hi next project, a serial killer TV series titled The House That Jack Built that will air in 2016. It’s scheduled to be an eight-part series, though no word on specific distribution methods at this time.