It's up for a prize.
American shootings had reached an all-time high by 1999", he said, although he stressed he did not want his film to try to explain why they had happened.
This contrasts with Michael Moore's Oscar-winning documentary Bowling For Columbine, which explored US gun culture and won a special prize at Cannes last year.
Van Sant said he thought Moore's film was "brilliant", but added: "We didn't want to explain anything. As soon as you explain one thing, there are five other possibilities that are somehow negated because you explained it one way.
"There was also the issue of finding an explanation for something that doesn't necessarily have an explanation."
Are we having a philosophical discussion here, or am I being reprimanded?