Shia LaBeouf walks out of Nymphomaniac press conference after quoting Eric Cantona

The actor answered only one question about Lars von Trier's film

Antonia Molloy
Sunday 09 February 2014 18:08
Shia LaBeouf gave an enigmatic answer to a question about the high volume of sex scenes in Nymphomaniac
Shia LaBeouf gave an enigmatic answer to a question about the high volume of sex scenes in Nymphomaniac

He is well-known for being controversial and, in his latest attention-grabbing move, Shia LaBeouf walked out of a press conference for Nymphomaniac – after answering a single question.

The American actor was in attendance at the Berlin Film Festival on Sunday for the world premiere of Lars von Trier’s film.

But things got off to a bad start just 10 minutes into the press conference, when 27-year-old LaBeouf was asked his first question, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

The question was about LaBeouf’s decision to star in a movie with so many sex scenes.

He enigmatically replied: “When the seagulls follow the trawler, it’s because they think sardines will be thrown into the sea.

"Thank you very much.”

To the surprise of fellow panellists Christian Slater, Stacy Martin, Stellan Skarsgard, Uma Thurman and producer Louise Vesth, he then stormed out.

The quote can be attributed to former Manchester United football player, Eric Cantona, who spoke the words before walking out of a news conference in 1995, following his conviction for assault.

It has become one of the most memorable phrases in football history.

But it is not the first time the actor has drawn on others' creative ideas.

In January, LaBeouf was mired in controversy when it emerged that he had plagiarised graphic novelist Daniel Clowes' work in a short film called Howard he made for Cannes Film Festival last year.

LaBeouf issued a series of apologetic tweets to Clowes, but matters worsened when it was revealed that these closely resembled a post written four years earlier on Yahoo! Answers by a user named Lili.

The former Disney star subsequently announced his retirement from public life on Twitter.

But in a seeming about turn, he then went on to publish further tweets.

In the same month, footage emerged of the actor headbutting a man in a south London pub, who had allegedly insulted his girlfriend.

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It was the second time he had been involved in a brawl at the Hobgoblin pub - in November 2012 he got into a fight with a punter who stole his hat.

The remainder of Sunday's press conference focused on Nymphomaniac itself and the experience of working for von Trier, who was not in attendance.

The controversial director had earlier appeared at the photocall wearing a Cannes t-shirt bearing the slogan "perosna non grata".

Von Trier made a vow of silence after he was interrogated by police for his remarks at the 2011 Cannes film festival, in which he appeared to sympathise with Adolf Hitler.

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