Mia Hansen-Løve: Intimacy coordinators are like the “virtue police”

“I can understand why some people find it comforting, but it’s a far cry from my own experience on film sets.”

NEW YORK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 08: Mia Hansen-Løve attends the "Have a nice morning" screening at the 60th New York Film Festival at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on October 8, 2022 in New York City.  (Photo by Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images for FLC)

Getty Images for FLC

It’s hard to think of a film industry profession that has garnered more attention in the past year than intimacy coordinators. As Hollywood continues to make incremental moves to make sets more inclusive, it’s become a popular trend to hire experts to choreograph sex scenes and ensure that all performers agree on what they’re going to do. The prevalence of voices demanding more sex scenes only increases the demand for the job.

But it seems that for every artist who praises the experience of working with an intimacy coordinator, there is another who criticizes the practice. Debates about the delicate balance between performer safety and artistic spontaneity aren’t going away anytime soon, and it’s hard to find a Hollywood figure who doesn’t have a strong opinion on the matter.

In a new interview with him The guardian, Mia Hansen-Løve offered her opinion on the controversial issue. The director of “Bergman Island” and “A Beautiful Morning” is definitely in the camp of filmmakers who believe that intimacy coordinators unnecessarily hinder the creative process on set.

– No no. Until I’m forced to, I won’t use them,” Hansen-Løve said when asked if she had worked with intimacy coordinators. “I don’t think I need it. I am extremely sensitive and pay close attention to the respect actors have for each other. I never had any problems. I never forced any actor to do anything. Everything is discussed and happens very smoothly. So for me there is no need for intimacy coordinators. If I was forced to keep some kind of virtue police on the set, I would rather not shoot these scenes. I understand why some people find it comforting, but it’s a far cry from my own experience on film sets.”

While Hansen-Løve’s comments likely place her outside the mainstream Hollywood consensus on intimacy coordinators, her opinion resonates with many of her fellow European art filmmakers. When Gaspar Noé was asked about the recent proliferation of intimacy coordinators in an interview with IndieWire, the “Irreversible” director gave a blunt answer. “It doesn’t exist in France.”

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