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Directors UK, the trade association for screen directors in Britain, suggested some miserable alternatives to avoid sex scenes with physical interaction while social distancing is required, in an update to its Directing Nudity and Simulated Sex
The guidelines suggest that characters could be shown fixing their own clothes/re-dressing after the event or limbs could be depicted moving under bedclothes, while another option is to show the closing of a bedroom door and leave the
action to the viewer's imagination.
Directors are encouraged to find inspiration by revisiting classic films such as It Happened One Night or Casablanca , which were made under the Hays Code that was introduced in the 1930s and
prohibited the depiction of sex on screen in Hollywood.
Bill Anderson, who has directed episodes of Doctor Who and was part of the team who has worked on the guidelines. He said that directors and writers would have to come up with
different ways to show intimacy, and he encouraged programme makers to question whether a sex scene is absolutely necessary.
For productions that require sex scenes, alternative ideas from the guidelines include motion capture and digital
performances, green screen or animation to composite the required encounter and another suggested option is casting real life couples who won't need to socially distance.
Update: No Sex
Please, We're British Filmmakers
We've said it before, and we'll probably say it again, but there is little doubt that moralisers and neo-puritans are rubbing their hands together at the possibilities that Covid-19 has presented them.
The Trouble with Being Born is a 2020 Austria / Germany Sci-Fi drama by Sandra Wollner. Starring Ingrid Burkhard, Susanne Gschwendtner and Jana McKinnon.
Elli is an android programmed with memories that mean everything to her owner but nothing to her. The story of a machine and the ghosts we all carry within us.
Film critic and anti-censorship
campaigner David Stratton has attacked the Melbourne International Film Festival for its 'craven response' in dropping the movie The Trouble with Being Born, that features an adult man in an implied sexual relationship with a young android girl.
movie was dropped from this year's online-only program after 'concerns' were raised by two forensic psychologists. Dr Karen Owen, a former manager of Corrections Victoria's Sex Offender Programs, last month said she was so disturbed by the film she
ceased watching it and deleted the link, adding that because the festival was an online event this year, without question [the film] would be used as a source of arousal for men interested in child abuse material.
In announcing the decision to censor
the film on July 30, the festival's artistic director Al Cossar said the safety and wellbeing of the MIFF community and the broader Australian public is the festival's paramount concern. While the Australian Classification Board had cleared the film to
screen in this year's festival, we have decided to remove the film, he said.
Tom Ryan, former film critic for The Sunday Age , was similarly scathing, writing a day earlier on the same forum that the festival was guilty of meekly acquiescing in the
face of a potential controversy. Ryan said:
A film that was selected by [artistic director Al Cossar's] team, approved by the programming committee, and passed by the Australian censor was then withdrawn because of
what two psychologists who either hadn't seen the film or had only seen part of it had to say about it.