What is an Intimacy Coordinator?
An Intimacy Coordinator facilitates and maintains a strong dialogue between the creative team and the actors on a set to provide a safe and comfortable environment in which the actors can be free to do their best work.
An Intimacy Coordinator:
Acts as a neutral third party to help the director/showrunner tell the story they want to tell while maintaining an emotionally and mentally safe environment for the actors.
Discusses with actors what they’ll be doing on camera before shooting begins and ensures throughout shooting that the actors’ boundaries are not crossed.
Interviews actors before they are cast to ensure they are comfortable with and aware of what will be asked of them.
Acts as an LGBTQIA+ advocate and ally on set.
Negotiates nudity and simulated sex riders and ensures throughout shooting that nothing outside the rider is filmed/will be used to protect the network from legal issues after editing.
Discusses any inappropriate behavior with cast and crew when the need arises to ensure a harassment-free workplace for everyone.
Puts actors at ease as a neutral party who is equally vested in their best interest and the creative vision of the director and showrunner.
Ensures a closed set according to SAG guidelines.
Arranges for actors to have modesty garment options and to learn how to put them on.
Collaborates with make up on prosthetics for intimate scenes.
Why have an Intimacy Coordinator?
Having an Intimacy Coordinator on set lets the actors know that their comfort and emotional safety is of the utmost concern to the production, which helps them feel free to express their concerns and limits and play within those bounds. It communicates to the audience that the production was carried out ethically and thoughtfully.
When an actor's boundaries are in conflict with the showrunner or director's concept for a simulated sex or nude scene, difficult conversations ensue and power dynamics come into play. With an IC on set, there is someone there to facilitate the resolution of these sensitive situations in a way that respects the actor's wishes while still telling the story.
Particularly in the current climate as we continue to move through the #metoo movement, this kind of emotional safety sends a strong signal to the cast, crew, creative/production team, and audience that your production was made in a responsible way.
If you think your production could benefit from an Intimacy Coordinator, feel free to contact Mia with your questions.
© 2018 by Mia Schachter. All Rights Reserved.