|Lars von Trier and Peter Aalbæk Jensen|
Zentropa, or Zentropa Entertainments, is a Danish film company started in 1992 by director Lars von Trier and producer Peter Aalbæk Jensen. Zentropa is named after the train company Zentropa in the film Europa (1991), which started the collaboration between von Trier and Jensen.
It has produced over 70 feature films and has become the largest film production company in Scandinavia. It owns a number of subsidiary companies in Europe. Zentropa is also responsible for creating a large studio complex called Filmbyen (Film City), where both Zentropa and many other film-related companies are located.
In 1998, von Trier made history by having his company Zentropa be the world's first mainstream film company to produce hardcore pornographic films, under the division Puzzy Power. Three of these films, Constance (1998), Pink Prison (1999), and the adult/mainstream crossover-feature All About Anna (2005), were made primarily for a female audience and were extremely successful in Europe, with the first two being directly responsible for the legalising of pornography in Norway in March 2006.
Women too like to see other people having sex. What they don't like is the endless close-ups of hammering bodyparts without a story. Von Trier is the first to have realised this and produced valuable quality porn films for women.
Zentropa's initiative spearheaded a European wave of female-friendly porn films from directors such as Anna Span, Erika Lust and Petra Joy, while von Trier's company Zentropa was forced to abandon the experiment due to pressure from its English business partners. In July 2009, women's magazine Cosmopolitan ranked Pink Prison as No. 1 in its Top Five of the best women's porn, calling it the "role model for the new porn-generation".
Sexual harassment allegations
In November 2017, in the wake of the Me Too movement, nine women – all former employees at Zentropa – spoke of an "ingrained" culture of abuse at the studio. Several of the those interviewed said that their treatment had prompted them to stop working in the film industry altogether. Jensen, the company's co-founder and former CEO, was specifically accused of sexual misconduct and sidelined from operations. An internal memo stated that he would no longer exercise "influence on the daily leadership of the company [and] will not partake in any management meetings."
- EF Rental
- Electric Parc
- Puzzy Power
- Trust Film Sales
- Zentropa Real
- Zentropa Interaction
- Zentropa Rekorder
- Zentropa Klippegangen
- Zentropa International Köln GmbH
- Zentropa International Poland
- Historical Dictionary of Scandinavian Cinema. Scarecrow Press. 31 August 2012. pp. 417–. ISBN 978-0-8108-5524-3.
- Angus Finney (10 October 2014). The International Film Business: A Market Guide Beyond Hollywood. Routledge. pp. 106–107. ISBN 978-1-136-29503-4.
- Anne Mette Lundtofte (13 May 2013). Zentropia. Gyldendal. pp. 74–. ISBN 978-87-02-14732-2.
- Palgrave Connect (Online Service) (11 December 2013). Behind the Screen: Inside European Production Cultures. Palgrave Macmillan. pp. 229–. ISBN 978-1-137-28218-7.
- "Norwegian Media Authority none-censorship decision" (PDF). Retrieved 15 July 2010.
- Stern No. 40, 27 September 2007
- Thomas Vilhelm: Filmbyen (Ekstra Bladets Forlag, 2003, ISBN 978-87-7731-274-8), page 74
- Cosmopolitan (German edition), July 2009, page 30
- Zentropa Sidelines Co-Founder Peter Aalbæk Jensen Amid Harassment Allegations, Elsa Keslassy, Variety, November 15, 2017