Sean Bean Speaks Out Against Sex Scene Coordinators And Censorship

Sean Bean may have just said something that will get him raked over the proverbial coals.

By Michileen Martin | Published

sean bean

Sean Bean of Game of Thrones and The Lord of the Rings fame may have just said something sure to get him raked over the coals. Bean is not happy about the increased use of intimacy coordinators; a production position that began in the wake of the Harvey Weinstein scandal and the #MeToo movement that followed. At the same time he decries what he calls the censorship of sex scenes.

The star was talking to the UK’s Times Magazine (via Variety) when he criticized the use of intimacy coordinators. “It would inhibit me more because it’s drawing attention to things,” Sean Bean said. “Somebody saying, ‘Do this, put your hands there, while you touch his thing…’” He brought up the example of his time playing opposite Joely Richardson in the 1993 miniseries Lady Chatterley. He called the experience “spontaneous” and “a joy.” Bean continued, “We had a good chemistry between us, and we knew what we were doing was unusual. Because she was married, I was married. But we were following the story. We were trying to portray the truth of what D.H. Lawrence wrote.”

When the interviewer brought up the purpose of intimacy coordinators — to make actors feel more comfortable on set in the wake of the seismic #MeToo allegations — Sean Bean responded while referring to his Snowpiercer co-star Lena Hall with whom he shared an interesting sex scene. “I suppose it depends on the actress,” Bean said. “[Hall] had a musical cabaret background, so she was up for anything.”

sean bean lena hall snowpiercer
Sean Bean and Lena Hall in Snowpiercer

In season 2 of Snowpiercer, Sean Bean shared a scene with Lena Hall which became infamous because it was a particularly bizarre sex scene involving a mango. Along with objecting to intimacy coordinators, Bean claimed the mango scene was censored. “I think they cut a bit out actually,” Bean said. “Often the best work you do, where you’re trying to push the boundaries, and the very nature of it is experimental, gets censored when TV companies or the advertisers say it’s so much.”

So far, the quotes from Sean Bean have not yet sparked the kind of social media attention that would make you question the future of the star’s career, but the Internet isn’t remaining silent. It is noteworthy that of the users mentioning the article, none of them are exactly on Bean’s side. You can see some examples below.

One point that plenty of Twitter users bring up to counter Sean Bean’s argument is the example of fight choreography. While just telling two actors to beat the hell out of each other might come off as more “spontaneous,” unless they want to field more lawsuits than Johnny Depp and Amber Heard combined, film directors don’t usually suggest doing away with fight choreography. You could say the same things of stunt doubles and coordinators. Tweets making that counter-argument are below.

Will this become enough controversy to kill Bean’s career as easily as a Sean Bean character? Probably not. But, for better or worse, it may force the Lord of the Rings star think twice before saying something like this again out loud.