Director Ruben Östlund on 'The Square'

Hosted by

The new film The Square, is a darkly funny satire that follows Christian, played by Danish actor Claes Bang. Christian is a suave, high-minded curator of a modern art museum in Stockholm.

After his wallet and phone are stolen, Christian finds that it isn't so easy to live up to his ideals as he seeks out a bit of vigilante justice.

The writer and director of The Square is Ruben Östlund, a filmmaker who got on the radar in Hollywood with his 2014 film Force Majeure. That movie won the Jury Prize at Cannes and made the shortlist for best foreign language film at the Oscars. You may have seen the viral video  from when Östlund learned his film did not get nominated.

Östlund returned to Cannes this year with The Square -- which won the top prize, the Palme d'Or. And, once again, Sweden has selected his film at its entry in the foreign language category at the Oscars.

Östlund recently sat down with KCRW's Matt Holzman. They talked about viral videos (both watching and creating them), how Östlund's time making ski movies influences his work today, and why the idea of going to Hollywood makes him nervous. Östlund also shares why he loves awkward situations and wanted to work so many of them into The Square, which is rolling into theaters now.




Kim Masters


Kaitlin Parker