Michael Douglas weighs in on intimacy coordinators on set


Oscar-winning actor Michael Douglas is no stranger to sex scenes — and on the edge of 80, the star is sharing his thoughts on onscreen intimacy.

Per The Telegraph, the actor, 79 admitted that while he’s personally “past the age where I’ve got to worry about that,” he considers the concept of onset intimacy coordinators “interesting” and perhaps counterproductive to the creative process.

“It feels like executives taking control away from filmmakers — but there have been some terrible faux pas and harassment,” Douglas admitted in a new interview with Radio Times.

Douglas starred alongside Sharon Stone in “Basic Instinct.” Corbis via Getty Images

In the span of seven years, between 1987 and 1994, Douglas starred in a string of wildly successful erotic thrillers; “Fatal Attraction,” “Basic Instinct” and “Disclosure.” He refers to that unholy trinity as his “Sex Trilogy.”

Perhaps because of this experience, Douglas proclaimed himself the “expert of sex scenes” during a panel discussion at the Cannes Film Festival in 2023.

In the span of seven years, Douglas starred in a string of erotic thrillers including “Disclosure” with Demi Moore. Warner Bros.

Then and now, Douglas compares intimate scenes with fight sequence choreography, “Sex scenes are like fight scenes, it’s all choreographed. In my experience you take responsibility as the man to make sure the woman is comfortable, you talk it through.”

The self-proclaimed sexpert continued, “You say, ‘OK, I’m gonna touch you here if that’s all right.’ It’s very slow but looks like it’s happening organically, which is hopefully what good acting looks like.”

Douglas starred in the 1987 erotic thriller, “Fatal Attraction.” Corbis via Getty Images

Douglas admits that actors were more at risk for harassment before the age of onset intimacy coordinators, “I’m sure there were people that overstepped their boundaries, but before, we seemed to take care of that ourselves. They would get a reputation and that would take care of them.”

Reflecting on his film catalog and female costars, Douglas said, “I talked to the ladies, [because] I did a few of those sex movies – sexual movies – and we joke about it now, what it would have been like to have an intimacy coordinator working with us.”

Douglas said he found the concept of intimacy coordinators, “interesting.” WireImage

Onscreen, off screen, and on the golf green, Douglas is prone to showing skin, revealing that he and his wife Catherine Zeta-Jones play golf with a certain penis penalty.

“The rules are — I have to whip it out if I don’t hit it past the ladies’ tees, which I manage most of the time, but there have been times when we’re playing alone, and have to give her a little show because we are competitive,” he said in March 2023.

Douglas is currently starring as the decidedly not-erotic Benjamin Franklin in the eponymous eight-part series on Apple TV+.

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