Lars Von Trier

Lars von Trier loves to shock. Just watch his movies. But he also likes to say shocking things. Remember when he said former President George W. Bush dreamed of being whipped by Condoleezza Rice? Well, now he says that he's a Nazi who can "understand" Hitler.

At a Cannes film festival news conference, he said he found out "he was really a Nazi, because my family was German ... which also gave me some pleasure. ... I understand Hitler. But I think he did some wrong things. Yes, absolutely ... I sympathize with him a little bit."

Von Trier, who's also directed Dancer in the Dark (which won the top prize at Cannes) and Dogville, continued: "But, come on, I'm not for the Second World War and I'm not against Jews. I am, of course, very much for Jews. No not too much, because the Israelis are a pain in the ass ... How can I get out of this sentence? ... OK. I'm a Nazi."

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As Kirsten Dunst, who stars in his new movie Melancholia, looked on nervously, the director turned to talking about the film and joked that it was "crap" and "might not be worth seeing." (It reportedly drew polite applause after a press screening.)

As part of his rambling, von Trier added that his next project with the actresses would be a long porn film "with lots of uncomfortable sex."

Von Trier was asked if he would like to do a larger film and answered, "Yes. We Nazis like to do things on a big scale. Maybe I could do The Final Solution."

In an interview with The Associated Press afterward, von Trier said he had been joking and didn't think people took his comments seriously.

Dunst told the AP she was embarrassed by his comments. "He likes to run his mouth," she said.

Watch von Trier's comments: