Sex scenes in film get new rules to prevent sexual misconduct on set

Intimacy coordinators required to be completely 'clear about what actors consent to' 

Jacob Stolworthy
Thursday 30 January 2020 09:15
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Trailer for Blue Valentine (2010) starring Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams

New guidelines for sex scenes in films have been established in a move to prevent sexual harassment and misconduct on set.

The Screen Actors Guild-American Federation of Television and Radio Artists have released a series of rules regarding the use of intimacy coordinators in response to the #MeToo movement.

Intimacy coordinators will now be required to have “one-on-one meetings with actors to be clear about what they consent to”.

“Under the guidelines, intimacy coordinators should have pre-production meetings with producers, directors, and writers to establish the exact degrees of nudity expected and the specifics of simulated sex as established in scripts,” union president Gabrielle Carteris said in a statement.

“These protocols and guidelines will help to normalise and encourage the use of intimacy coordinators in productions, therefore ensuring the safety and security of SAG-AFTRA members while they work.”

The intimacy coordinators will also help the director choreograph sex scenes so that the safety of an actor is not compromised.

They will be on hand to check physical barriers and modesty garments and ensure everyone involved is comfortable.

Founder of the Intimacy Professionals Association, Amanda Blumenthal, said the new guidelines “strike the right balance between describing the roles and responsibilities of intimacy coordinators while still allowing for flexibility from show-to-show".

Co-founder and associate director Alicia Rodis added: “It is our hope that this process can be widely adopted for an effective and reasonable path for productions to work with a trained intimacy coordinator.

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"With these protocols already field-tested by an ever-growing number of productions and studios, we believe we can make important and welcome industry changes.”

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