There's a film by the French auteur Catherine Breillat called Sex is Comedy, in which we discover sex is anything but. Two actors who hate each other are asked to act out a sex scene on camera and it's as awkward and as distressing as you can imagine. The audience learns a lot about filmmaking, intimacy and authenticity, and even themselves along the way. There comes a point where the premise isn't all that funny anymore, but Breillat is well known for that. Check it out sometime if you want to experience some awkward discomfort.
We imagine the people who responded to "Actors and Actresses, what is filming a sex scene really like?" which is today's burning question from Redditor emllik2, can relate to this all too well.
"I was shooting a short..."
I was shooting a short non explicit sex scene for a short film while being so freakin sick. I had to take breaks from shooting a film to go shoot diarrhea out of my futile weak body. Thankfully everyone was professional about it.
The shooting itself was quite interesting, i was laying on my back, the other person sitting on me (both of us pants on), camera operator standing above us, so there were three layers of people on the bed.
We were grinding - under the sheets - only when it was necessary, for couple of seconds, maybe three times. Then we were shooting details of our hands locking into one another, our faces, running fingers through hair and so.
The voice-over was the most fun part, we had a blast syncing our "aaaah"'s and "oh god"'s with the footage.
"The second I read it..."
I was in a theatre show where I had to sit next to a girl and feel her boob. The second I read it in the script I started feeling anxious about it. When I was talking to the actress about the scene she seemed totally cool with everything so for the whole two week run of the show she got her boob groped every day and twice on Wednesdays and Sundays.
"Have done exactly one..."
Amateur actor. Have done exactly one of these. It was very awkward and quite cold, but it was a very small production, so I wasn't pressured into anything I wasn't comfortable with.
"One of the interesting things..."
Actor here. It's very not sexy. Instead it's highly choreographed and rehearsed (I'm going to touch you here, you'll move there, we kiss here) with hopefully an intimacy coordinator (non-Union films will not always have one, so it's important to learn how to advocate for yourself to the director and your acting partner if ANYTHING feels uncomfortable). The goal is to have it completely down pat with your partner so that there is no improvisation. Usually it begins with both actors telling the other their no-fly zones. I always say, please don't touch my groin, or touch between my butt cheeks. It's awkward, but can be sort of a funny icebreaker. Once no fly zones are established, the intimacy coordinator works with the actors/director to establish what the choreo will be.
Then the shooting can take hours. Even for a two minute scene, if they just want a master, a closeup, and the reverse (which is standard), each shot can take anywhere from thirty minutes, to two hours before they begin rolling. And theeen you have to do multiple takes. A minimum would be three takes for each shot, but almost ALWAYS it's closer to 7-15 depending on the director and DP.
One of the interesting things about film acting too is perspective and what looks good on camera. Next time you're watching a scene in a car, take a second to look at how the characters are positioned/how their seats are positioned. It's usually not in anyway how a human being would ever sit, but it reads as totally normal on camera. This is the same for intimacy scenes. You might be in a super awkward position, not sexy at all, but it READS on-camera as super sexy.
Last but not least, try getting in the mood when 1) wearing a dance belt, and 2) there's anywhere from 15-50 people watching.
"Really the most important thing..."Giphy
Adding to what's here (because this is really spot-on), sex scenes are further complicated by being sometimes nude (in the wide shot, I've had my @ss on camera a few times), but then you can put on the dance belt for the close-ups. I did one scene where the actress wore sweat pants for all of the close-ups because they were just her back. I had pants on as well, per her request. Then in the wides we only had modesty tape because the director wanted that side shot where nothing shows but you can see everyone is naked. All very professional, but still, you know, weird.
Really the most important thing is that everyone is comfortable. Sometimes even the director or producer will tell you to tone things down because it's getting too much for them (and, one would assume, the target audience). Also, sometimes you're shooting a weird sex scene on purpose - I did a whole fantasy sequence on one show where I and a bunch of other people were just standing there naked while the two main characters were going down. Very awkward. The lead actress and writer kept apologizing to the lead actor because she'd forgotten the scene was in the script when she'd booked him for the role, and I guess they were long time friends. Lots of nervous laughter on set that day.
"The show that I was rehearsing for..."
Theatre actor here, so a bit of a different perspective. The show that I was rehearsing for before the pandemic featured intimate moments, albeit not full-on sex scenes, and we had an intimacy coordinator. On one hand, they act like a fight choreographer, mapping out the moves so that way they are the same every time. No one drops any surprises on their partner. On the other, they act as sort Reps or liaisons for the actors. They will discuss with the director what their vision is for the scene and try to replicate that while maintaining their actors' boundaries.
So before any physical work starts, they lead conversations between partners about what their no-gos are and what is okay. They will also help establish a tap-in between partners, which is a little shared gesture, like a high-five or handshake, between actors that indicates that what they are about to be doing is work and separate from them as people.
"Typically everyone is professional..."
Former actor and now director here: it's only as awkward as the people involved are. Typically everyone is professional, mature, and understands that this is the behavior their character would engage in, so they want to portray it as best as they can. Most approach it very professionally.
As a director I get rid of all non-essential people on set, but make sure that there are enough around that it doesn't feel creepily empty. Anybody who I feel would make it weird isn't allowed.
Communication is key, I always let the actors set their own boundaries. I describe my ideal scenario, then let the actors agree to it or offer a compromise. I let them know that at any point they can change their mind.
There are tons of little skin colored pasties, adhesive panty strips, and c*ck socks for the actors to wear.
Sometimes people get turned on, it's only natural, and in that case we takes breaks to chill out and then resume later.
"Communication is really key..."
Actor here. I'm more of a "charactery" type, so intimate scenes for me are few and far between, but do still happen.
Communication is really key, especially on some low-budget and TV shoots where you literally meet the person you're about to be intimate with while they're setting up the lights for the scene.
One TV show in particular, I had to be in "the sock" (basically a flesh colored thong that covers Johnson & Co but little else) while my scene partner was topless w/ nipple covers and a flesh colored thong. We had little time to prep, so it was change, then hop into bed, block the scene with the director, and then talk through comfort amongst ourselves before the shot began.
I was very sure to make it clear that if my acting partner had any qualms or hiccups during the scene (she was relatively new) that she should stay STOP and that was that. Also, I talked through the choreography (because it's important to not stray from what has been discussed for obvious reasons) beat by beat to make sure we were on the same page. This is just common courtesy, and for myself extremely important for my scene partner to know that I have their back as well as my own.
As for being enjoyable, if you think thrusting two tight thongs under covers close to each other while wondering how your pale pale backside is going to look on film, then I guess this is your kink.
"I was reading this..."
I was reading this and suddenly remembered I had done this for a short film in college. It was literally the least erotic thing ever. There were at least five other people in the room (lights, sound, camera, director, the girl's roommates etc), and you are just trying to remember what you are supposed to do--while acting naturally. Super, super awkward. This wasn't a sex scene as much as an implied sex scene.
Do you have something to confess to George? Text "Secrets" or "" to +1 (310) 299-9390 to talk to him about it.
With so many streaming platforms and too many recommendations to watch your friends' favorite shows, how do you prioritize what shows to watch?
Those who can afford to sit in front of the TV all day–because that is the commitment it takes to start making a dent in your viewing playlist–must choose wisely in determining which shows to start binging.
If a show fails to grab your attention from the get go, you might be prone to ditch it and go on to the next one on the list.
The risk of course is you might be missing out on something that is worth sitting through the slow-burn, exposition-y episodes of a show that is trying to establish itself at the beginning but becomes wildly rewarding towards the end.
But who has time for all that?
Apparently, there were many TV show viewers whose patience ran thin.
To find out what shows strangers online thought was not worth their time, Redditor itsamu asked:
"What TV series isn't worth finishing?"
You would think fantasy and action shows can sustain your attention, but they're not all created the same.
Not Having The Time For This One
"Once upon a time. It literally repeats the entire first season’s plot."
"I'm the fastest man alive. Except for the main villain of this season. And the random guy I'm chasing who escaped around the corner of the building, despite the fact I can search an entire square mile in under a minute. Nah, he's gone, no need to check."
One Strong Season
"Heroes. Watch the first season, and then stop."
Can't Kill What's Already Dead
"The walking dead, gave up a while ago. Don't even know if it has finished or not yet."
The Outlook Was Already...
"Grimm. Started off so good, just got worse and worse and worse."
Getting Straight To The Point
"Arrow. It ends at season 2, ya hear me? SEASON TWO!"
Many Redditors recommended cutting the length of a TV season by half.
Wrap It Up
"We really should have more limited series. Some shows have premises that are good for a season or two that get ruined by dragging it out for multiple seasons."
The Brits Get It
"Watch more British shows. Fewer episodes generally so they don’t as often run out of ideas or go off the rails. Fleabag for example, two perfect seasons and done."
Even people who enjoy the pacing of dramas found some in the genre quite tedious.
That Final Season
"House of cards. Just stop watching on the last episode of the penultimate season and pretend the last one is still in the works. The last season is insulting on so many levels."
You Gotta Be Toking
"Weeds. Good for the first three seasons or so. Really f'king comes off the rails after that."
They May Have A Case Here
"Suits. It becomes very repetitive after a while."
"Worst Finale Ever"
"The last couple seasons of Castle were garbage. The finale was the worst finale in the history of finales. Yes even worst than GoT and HIMYM. Such a disgrace for a show that used to be cute, fun and sharply written. I can’t even bring myself to watch marathons when they are on and it was one of my favorite shows when it first started."
I'm probably in the minority here but I had to give up on Game of Thrones by the end of its first season.
I think I was expecting more fantasy and dragons straight away, but as I waited for more action, I found myself losing interest in the characters and patience in keeping track of who was related to whom.
So I put a pin in it and started watching other shows.
When I heard about fans complaining about the letdown of an ending, that was enough for me to remove it from my list permanently.
Hey, to each their own.
There is little more fascinating than learning about popular customs and traditions in foreign countries.
This can include trademark foods and dishes, styles of clothing, as well as country specific holidays and traditions.
But as fascinating as these are to foreigners, locals are often less than impressed by their iconic homegrown brands and traditions.
In fact, the very mention of them might result in yawn or an eye-roll.
"What is something popular in your country that you absolutely don't have interest in?"
Why Not Let It Be A Surprise?
"Gender reveal party."- SuvenPan
Fascinating, But Inhumane?
"Bull fighting"- Mrfister7377Season 2 Episode 1 Spain GIF by National Geographic ChannelGiphy
There Is Better Coffee In Canada
"Tim Hortons."- dearest-ribwich
Unless Being Coached By Ted Lasso...
"I tag along to matches with a mate from time to time but it really is like the scene out of the IT Crowd."- Philster07
Just How Real Is It?
"Reality TV shows."- silviazbitchangry mtv GIF by HacklockGiphy
Big Money, Big Money... Just Not Mine...
"Everybody uses slot machines but it's not my thing."- runaway_train35
Hot Cocoa In The Lodge Will Do...
"I know how to do it, I've done a lot of it, but no thanks."- RuggiardSaturday Night Live Nbc GIF by HULUGiphy
Not Always Indicative Of Domestic Happiness...
"Marriages that are full of spectacle, instagram stories and tons of people."
"I don't even care about marriage that much, but when I do, I want it to be just with the people I actually care about."
"I don't want to give a show."- RoguishBaron
It's easy to see how something commonplace in one country might not elicit the same level of fascination to locals as it does foreigners.
Though based on the selections above, it's fascinating to note how many pet peeves seem to be universal.
Proving that though oceans and mountains may divide us, we're not so different after all.
Everyone is beautiful in their own way.
Something all too easily forgotten in this world of unrealistic, not to mention unhealthy, standards regarding beauty and physical appearance.
Making it all the more upsetting that there are still people in this world who actually feel the need to call people "ugly" right to their faces.
Luckily, those on the receiving end of that unnecessary bullying often have enough self-worth that they have just the right response should such an unfortunate situation arise.
"What's the best answer to being called ugly ?"
Always Rely On The Classics
"Classic Cyrano de Bergerac: 'I give you this to work with, and that's the best insult you can come up with?'"- Terpsichorean_Wombat
You Must Know This From Experience
‘"Hopefully that’s all we have in common.’"- Annoying_pain_in_a**
That The Best You Can Do!
"I've been called worse things from better people."- That-End-322Unimpressed Viola Davis GIFGiphy
The Bar Is Certainly Low
"'And even I wouldn't f*ck you'."- elenchusis
Blessing In Disguise... Or Just A Blessing!
"I once had a guy tell me that he would find me attractive if I wasn’t fat."
"I basically went 'whew! Good thing I’m fat!'”- Low-Stick6746
“'Thanks, its a relief to know that someone like you doesn't find me attractive'”- greedthecuriousReassuring Jimmy Fallon GIF by The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy FallonGiphy
You Think You're The First?!
"If I had a dollar for every time someone called me ugly, you'd think I was handsome."- GreyFoxNinjaFan
Not Afraid To Bring Your Mother Into This!
"I've got a face only a mother would love, and your mother loves me very much!"- fenris_dallocort
Learn From The Greats
"A quote from Lincoln after he was called 2 faced:"
"'If I was two faced, do you think I would choose this one to wear?'"- Layer-Motorabraham lincoln net art GIFGiphy
Tell Me Something I Don't Know...
"Just go 'and?' and look at them all confused as if they just pointed out something irrelevant about you, like the color of your hair."
"People really break when you give them an anticlimactic reaction."- Particular_Fudge4856
It's sad to think that people have nothing better to do than to make demeaning comments about others.
Making them all the more deserving of all the clap-backs listed above.
Plus many, many more.
There are just some things children do not need to know.
When you are a parent, you know that the walls have ears.
So try to keep it that in mind when discussing seriously private matters.
RedditoriLuvDILFSSSSwanted everyone to spill some tea on their parents.
"What is something you know about your parents that you shouldn’t know?"
I've blocked all of my parents secrets. I hope.
Oh Babyjamal lyon love GIF by Empire FOXGiphy
"As a kid I saw an old family tree that showed my mom had 3 babies (all different dads) whom she gave up for adoption before meeting my dad. I didn’t say s**t and she didn’t admit it to me until about 10 years afterwards."
"As a teenager I moved in with my mom after not living with her for most of my life and fighting to be a part of hers. One night I heard her and my step dad talking about how the only reason they let me live there was for the tax credits and child support."
"Okay that's just messed no kid should have to hear that from their own parent."
"My mom didn't marry my dad because she was in love with him, she chose him when the man she was in love with told her he couldn't marry a woman who already had another man's child and my dad had no problem with stepkids. She did eventually fall in love with him for what it's worth."
"My mother and stepfather were the direct cause of my little sister’s death due to physical abuse. She had a shunt in her brain and due to the impact of a few hard slaps to the face, it shifted and forced her to choke and die. My other little sister and I are the only ones that know."
"I’ve chatted with CPS and DCF and without additional proof, there are doubts that anything can be done since her death was listed as 'natural causes' and neither of us said anything at the time to any authority figures. It’s been almost five years and I never stop thinking about it."
Mistakeswatching warren harding GIFGiphy
"That they definitely should have married other people."
Love and marriage. What a story.
Gone and BackHeidi Klum Wow GIF by LifetimeGiphy
"As a young kid I overheard my parents screaming in another room about what age I was when my dad left us. Mom said 3 months. Dad said 3 years. I didn’t know he left at all. At least he came back?"
"My mother and father had a deal that my father would get a job, so my mom could finish college, and then my mom would get a job, so my dad could finish college. My father did his part and when it was his time to go back to college, my mom and all her family humiliated him into going back to work. My brother and I are not supposed to know this, we were too young, but I know."
"My parents escaped from Iraq during the worst period of the Saddam regime. As a kid, you don’t know what a war refugee is. I used to think my father worked at the welfare office. I found out years later that my father was going there for PTSD therapy. Having found his papers, I learned my father was tortured in prison for helping his students escape the country, and that the reason why he’s always limping wasn’t because of something genetic."
"But because they smashed his knee with a hammer, and locked him in a dark room for days with no medical help, destroying his career as an athlete and professor of physical fitness. My parents never ever ever talked about the stuff they went through. We grew up thinking we were a perfectly normal family."
"Well, for the first 16 years of my life I thought that my father had died in an accident. Turns out he just didn't care about me and my mom was trying to make 4yr old me feel better because she didn't want me to think it was my fault. It really f**ked with me when I found out at 16 that my biological father was still out there somewhere."
Not so Happy JuiceFrustrated Gecko GIFGiphy
"When I moved to Colorado with my mom i convinced her to smoke some weed with me. She giggled a lot, laughed at cartoons with me, demanded magic shell with her ice cream and then proceeded to tell me my father was a gay man who cheated on her multiple times with men during their marriage, including while she was pregnant with me."
Well, those are certainly some confessions. My goodness...
Do you have similar experiences to share? Let us know in the comments.