Emma Thompson has defended the role of intimacy coordinators on set in a new interview.
During an appearance on the Australian “Fitzy & Wippa” radio show to promote her new film, “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande,” one of the presenters asked the Oscar-winning actor what she made of Sean Bean’s recent comments in which he decried the use of intimacy coordinators in productions.
“Emma, I wanted to bring this up because I read it during the week, quite timely, but for the more intimate scenes that you guys had to do in the film, it was Sean Bean, who was Ned Stark in ‘Game of Thrones’ and he said he didn’t really appreciate the work of the intimacy coordinator because he said that it spoilt the spontaneity,'” said the radio host. “So is that how you found it? Did you guys have an intimacy coordinator there on set advising you what to do in these scenes?”
Responding, Thompson defended the profession and appeared either to mishear the host or not know who Sean Bean was.
“Intimacy coordinators are fantastically important and I don’t know [if] you were speaking to somebody who found it distracting but another conversation you might find people go, ‘It made me comfortable, it made me feel safe, it made me feel as though I was able to do this work,'” Thompson replied. “So intimacy coordinators are the most fantastic introduction in our work. And no, you can’t just ‘let it flow.’ There’s a camera there and a crew. You’re not on your own in a hotel room, you’re surrounded by a bunch of blokes, mostly. So it’s not a comfortable situation full stop.”
“So I don’t know who the actor was but maybe he had an intimacy coordinator accidentally at home,” she added.
Daryl McCormack, Thompson’s “Leo Grande” co-star, previously told Variety that although “intimacy coordinators are really important, and their work is so valuable and so useful and needed,” they had chosen not to use one during the making of “Good Luck to You, Leo Grande.”
“We were able to come to each other and go, ‘What do you think is going to best serve our relationship with this?’ he explained. “And we just found that out of the safety and out of the connection that we had already found. It felt real exciting to us to actually build that ourselves with the director.”