Gainsbourg: Melancholia pushed me
Charlotte Gainsbourg has revealed she was pushed to the limit by the suffering she endured for Melancholia.
The Science Of Sleep star appeared opposite Kirsten Dunst, Kiefer Sutherland and Alexander Skarsgard in Lars Von Trier's film about the end of the world, and told New York magazine the outlandish director literally made her suffer for his art.
Charlotte said: "I was pushed to my limit in Melancholia, but I was willing to go there.
"For the last shot, with me, Kirsten, and the little boy all together, Lars said, 'I want to have a bit of an experiment with you. Every morning I'd like to shoot this scene. Again. You can listen to whatever you want, do whatever you need. I don't know what I'm looking for, but it's the end of the world and I want to see an expression of something.'
"It was terrifying, because at a point, it wasn't acting any more. The suffering and the cruelty of the moment was horrible. Lars said to me in a very cynical way, 'With you it's like filming animal life: You have to wait for something to happen'."
The 40-year-old mother-of-three revealed the director insisted on her hiding in a cupboard and was not happy until she was crying real tears.
Charlotte explained: "Even after the shoot, when we did the post syncing for the ending, he said, 'I need noises. Go in the cabinet. I want to hear something weird.' I was pregnant, so I didn't want to go through any more suffering, but I did. And he would say, 'You're not suffering enough. Those are not real tears.' You can't pretend with him."