Sean Bean is getting criticised for his comments on intimacy co-ordinators used for sex scenes in films and TV shows.
The actor, whose credits include Sharpe, Troy and Game of Thrones, was asked about these specialists, who became a standard figure on sets in the wake of #MeToo for the protection of female actors.
“I should imagine it slows down the thrust of it. Ha, not the thrust, that’s the wrong word,” he told The Times on Saturday (7 August).
“It would inhibit me more because it’s drawing attention to things. Somebody saying, ‘Do this, put your hand there, while you touch his thing…’ I think the natural way lovers behave would be ruined by someone bringing it right down to a technical exercise.”
He also said of his Snowpiercer co-star Lena Hall, with whom he filmed an unaired sex scene: “This one had a musical cabaret background, so she was up for anything” – a comment that Hall has since responded to.
West Side Story star Rachel Zegler, who filmed love scenes with 25-year-old Ansel Elgort when she was just 17, replied after Bean’s comments were reported by media outlets.
She wrote: “Intimacy coordinators establish an environment of safety for actors. I was extremely grateful for the one we had on WSS – they showed grace to a newcomer like myself + educated those around me who’ve had years of experience.”
She urged Bean to “wake up”, stating: “Spontaneity in intimate scenes can be unsafe.”
Jameela Jamil, referencing Bean’s complaint that intimacy co-orindators could reduce sex scenes to “technical exercises”, wrote: “It should only be technical. It’s like a stunt. Our job as actors is to make it not look technical. Nobody wants an impromptu grope…”
Meanwhile, Bean’s co-star Hall replied to the actor’s comment about her, clarifying certain details about the sex scene the filmed together.
Hall stressed the importance of intimacy co-ordinators, calling them “a welcome addition to the set”.