The 'Bridgerton' masturbation scene shows 'how far we've come' in portraying female pleasure, according to the show's intimacy coordinator
- Lizzy Talbot choreographed all the
sexscenes for Netflix's hit show " Bridgerton."
- The series featured a solo sex scene with the actor
Phoebe Dynevor's character Daphne.
- Talbot said the masturbation scene "shows how far we've come" in portraying female pleasure.
"This was not for male pleasure," Talbot told Insider. "We were going to see something very different."
And Talbot made sure this was the case for every intimate scene on the show, including the character Daphne's first experience with masturbation.
A more realistic solo sex scene
Talbot set out to create a more realistic solo sex scene with the actor Phoebe Dynevor, who plays Daphne.
"We're not seeing a woman get nude for a masturbation scene," Talbot said. "She's fully covered during that whole sequence, and that's quite an unusual thing. "If you think back to typical masturbation scenes, like 'American Pie,' they're purely manufactured for the male gaze."
"This is just a million miles away from that, and it shows how far we've come," she added. "We're not here to see a naked woman exploring herself for the fantasies of men. It's a woman exploring herself for her own pleasure."
The most challenging scene to shoot
Dynevor has said she found the solo sex scene to be the most challenging to shoot.
"The stage directions are very specific: You have to [perform having] an orgasm," Dynevor told Glamour. "It's a difficult thing to rehearse, which means you don't. You just do it."
Talbot, who has been choreographing sex scenes for movies and TV for six years, said Dynevor's feelings were the norm.
"It's so much harder when you're working solo than when you're working with someone else," she told Insider. "You've got someone to bounce ideas off of or experiment with, you can work together."
"But when you're doing it on your own, it's really difficult because you want to separate the Daphne from the Phoebe," Talbot added.
In her interview with Glamour, Dynevor said filming the scene "would have been awkward" without an intimacy coordinator. If the episode-three director, Tom Verica, wanted to make any changes for the solo sex scene, he had to request them through Talbot.
"I think it would have been a very difficult experience if Lizzy hadn't been on set protecting me and looking after me," she told Glamour. "No one wants to be told how to perform orgasm [on set] by a man."
'She's absolutely in the unknown here'
Talbot told Insider that she and Dynevor decided to make the scene "tentative but exploratory."
"We are seeing Daphne's story, and she is someone who's experiencing this for the very first time," Talbot said. "And it was really interesting because Daphne doesn't know what she's heading toward. She's absolutely in the unknown here."
"We talked about this being for the women out there," she added. "I thought Phoebe was incredibly brave and incredibly brilliant in that scene because it's a tough one to do, and I think you can only be that vulnerable if you know you're in a safe place to do so."
Talbot set out to highlight "far more realistic sex scenes" throughout "Bridgerton."
"Normally in TV shows you might see, in a very important sex scene, a woman lying naked on the bed and the camera is roving up and down and taking in her body," she said.
For the scene in which Daphne loses her virginity to new husband, Simon, Dynevor was "fairly covered" and they kept the focus on "her face looking at Simon."
"We don't often see that," Talbot said. "We're looking at her face viewing a naked man for the very first time. It's not about the curves of her body and what she looks like nude. We've got the back of him in the foreground, and her gaze."
Talbot said she hoped future movies and TV shows would take a cue from "Bridgerton" when it comes to showing intimacy, rather than giving people "a false sense of what sexual pleasure should be."
"It's the movies that need to adjust," she added. "Not reality."
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