How Lars Von Trier Broaches Nudity With His Actors

Photo: Vittorio Zunino Celotto/2011 Getty Images

With bad-boy auteur Lars Von Trier, you can always count on two things with each new film: He'll say something controversial while promoting it, and it's bound to be filled with actors taking their clothes off. How does the Danish director manage to convince actors like Kirsten Dunst, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Emily Watson to go nude? According to Von Trier veteran Stellan Skarsgard, who's about to star in the director's sexually charged The Nymphomaniac, no tact is required. "He called me a couple of months ago and said, 'Stellan, I just want to book you for next summer, so don’t take anything else. I’m going to make a porno film and I want you to play the male lead,'" recalled Skarsgard to IndieWire. 'Yes of course, Lars,' I said. 'But you will not get to fuck in the film.' I said okay, he said, 'But you will show your dick at the end, and it will be very floppy. 'Okay Lars, I will be there, if that’s what you’re doing.'" Never change, Lars!