Sunday, December 9, 2007

Something Beautiful

While Monique Parent is taking some time to compose her next post, Mark Weiler contributes his thoughts on working in the softcore erotic genre....

“Turning something beautiful into something dirty”

I accepted work in this genre because I thought I was contributing to the well being of the World. I really did. “How to Love One Another 101.” On paper, the scripts read like romance novels or a made-for-Lifetime movie.

A happy couple goes on a venture where they happen upon other happy couples… A misunderstanding, much like any from “Three’s Company,” occurs…. perhaps over drinks… and a mistake is made. Infidelity. The couple is now faced with conflict. Promises are made. Re- commitment to the relationship is established. And romance fills the air once again.

No killing. No shooting. No bombs or guns. Just love, romance, passion, sex and infidelity. Things everyone everywhere can relate to. Topics, which fill up the schedules of all major networks.

I did a film that begins with myself and my newlywed bride in the throws of passion. We stop and look each other in eyes. She says, “Thank you for being the man of my dreams.” And I say, “Thank you for being my wife.” We kiss.

The movie gets released as “Deviant Whores.”

There was nothing deviant in the movie, no whores, and no infidelity. It’s a movie about a newlywed couple. And it’s filled with sex.

SEX.The one thing everyone wants. The only reason all of us are here. The underlying motivation for nearly all mainstream topic. When unattractive, desperate or awkward people have sex, it’s called “comedy.” When sad people have sex, it’s called “drama.” When attractive, confident people have sex, it’s called “pornography.”

Pornography is defined as “The presentation of sexually explicit behavior intended to arouse sexual excitement.”

Well, I don’t know about you, but every time Monica Bellucci is on screen, I get a little sexually excited. I’ve heard that Brad Pitt has the appeal to most women. Does that make them porn stars? Is “American Pie” actually a porno? What about “Original Sin” with Angelina Jolie and Antonio Banderas? Or “Brown Bunny” where Chloe Sevigny gets an extreme close up while having her lips wrapped around Vincent Gallo’s member.

It seems to me that it’s all in the marketing. Marc Bienstock, of MRG, can release a film called “Kinky Sex House” (even thought there’s really nothing kinky about it), and everyone knows they are going to see some titty. Bienstock need not spend another penny on promotions or advertising, because he knows, everyone’s willing to pay to see a little titty. Vincent Gallo releases “Brown Bunny” as an independent art film and it can be called “The most daring, controversial film of the year!”

I call it a mediocre blow-job.

They had to pay Angelina Jolie and Antonio Banderas a lot of money to pretend to fuck in “Original Sin.” But swap out the names, and I’ve seen hotter love scenes in most cheap Skin-a-max films.
I guess what troubles me the most is that people buy into it. It’s just sex… the most natural, compelling, desire on the planet… the reason we are all here… whether it’s Barbara Streisand, Pam Anderson, Jenna Jameson, James Gandolfini, Ben Stiller, Ron Jeremy or you! It’s just sex.

Whether Miramax spends $20million to show it to you on the big screen, or Hollywood publicists advertise it on the cover the Enquirer as scandal, or Mark Bienstock sells it to you for $12.99 in the business suite of the Hilton at 3AM, and titles it, “Naked Temptations,” it’s all just the same. It’s just sex… and it’s beautiful.


Mark Weiler is repped by Ben Scanlin at Imagination 9 and is also available for hire as an actor.

Monique Parent is represented by Peter Scott at Torque Entertainment and is available for hire as an actor as well as for consultant work.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Chemistry Notes: Positive Energy

Monique's Notes:
We all know that feeling when you have chemistry with someone. Eyes meet, they lock and you'd swear everyone can see the sparks fly between you.

As I've stated before, I've been nude on film an astounding number of times. Sometimes alone. Sometimes in a "love scene". I thought I'd share some of my experiences with chemistry.

Many years ago, I worked on a shoot for Playboy. Erotic Fantasies (there's probably a link to Amazon on my blog - buy the dvd - I could use the commission), I think it was. And let me tell you, when I met the actor I was to work, with the sparks were flying! I could barely control the trembling of my fingers as I attempted to "act" as if I had a crush on my piano teacher. Believe me, that was the easiest part of the shoot! When the time (finally) came for the "love" to begin, I was all fluttery and nervous. We kissed, the cameras rolling, and began to gradually discover each other. Wow. Just... wow...It was really great. There is nothing quite like making out with someone who you personally find incredibly attractive.

Cut. Reset. New angle. Touch up the makeup. How in the world did we get my red lipstick up in his eyebrow? A bit of nervous laughter from myself and the other actor. Whew! We're being paid to make out and it's FUN!

Okay. We're cleaned up and ready to do the exact same thing from another angle. Now they want us to start to remove each others clothing. Piece of cake! Except for the trembling hands and all these damn buttons! Now we start to kick it up a notch. Cameras rolling, bits of clothing falling every which way. Get the wind machine in there. Beautiful!! Cut!!

Touch up the makeup. lipstick everywhere. And we're not even naked yet.

Camera on dolly track now. Let's pick it up where we left off. More kissing. Oh that...wind machine...we are completely enthralled with each other, laughing with delight as we kiss and fondle. THIS kind of chemistry totally shows on camera. You can't create this magic in the editing room. Everyone on the set can feel it! The energy is crackling about the set!


Touch up the makeup again. Leave off the red lips, just clean them up as best you can. Oh, and let's get patched and socked now.


After 3 hours of foreplay I'm supposed to get a bandaid to stick to me?

Yeah, I do the babywipe thing. Let me tell you - when a woman is excited, there's no adhesive bandage that's going to stick. They keep falling off. Over and over and over, which is reeeaaallllyyy embarassing. Every man in the world thinks women have it easy, because it's not blatantly obvious when we are excited. Yeah. Right.

Now we spend another 5 hours making out while naked in front of 30 people. It's fun. But very uncomfortable at the same time. This is the time that trust between actors becomes very important. We have to protect each other. He needs to trust that I will hide his privates and I have to trust him to do the same. Fortunately, in this instance we were both very professional and helped each other out. Fans will write to me, asking, "Why don't you just DO IT?" Asked and answered in previous posts. That's not my genre. That's not the kind of film we are on. Simple as that. Not to mention, at the time, I was seriously dating someone. So it's simply not an option, ethically speaking.

The finished product that day was really beautiful. Sensual and romantic. Playboy does love scenes better than anyone. They really know their stuff. And we had magic. Chemistry. Whatever you want to call it. The camera sees it, and while it can be faked in editing, there's nothing like the real thing.

I went home that night to the man who would later become my husband. He may not have liked the fact that I spent 9 hours or so making out with some other guy. But after all, who got the happy ending?

Mark's Notes:

I never have really understood why production companies will make the first scene of the day a love scene. I’m sure it has to do with schedules, locations, and lighting set-ups, for which I have absolutely no input. But from an acting standpoint, it greatly cheapens the potentiality for a really hot scene.

After all, chemistry, and only chemistry, is what generates HEAT!

I can walk into a dressing room and scan the room for the possible women I’ll be working with, making judgments and evaluations based strictly on looks, and be optimistic or pessimistic towards the upcoming scene. It’s rare that those evaluations don’t make a major shift once spending more than a few moments interacting with my partner.

A fun, playful, flirtatious, open-minded average girl next door will blow away a cold, shy, nervous, bitter, vain perfectly-shaped model or playmate every time.
My best love scenes are always on last day of production. We’ve spent three or four sixteen hour days flirting, playing, sweet-talking and eye-balling each other and we’re both bursting at the seams to get at each other. We’ve already talked about sports, our families, politics, sex, video games, food, music, and movies. We’ve both imagined what the real thing would be like. We’ve both spent our past evenings masturbating to the thoughts of one another. We’ve eye-fucked each other to no end on set, and finally it’s time for our big scene.

Before the director can even yell, “ACTION!,” we are making out with the fierce heat of animals in rut. Before the director can tell us to start taking off each other’s clothes, we’re half undressed. Before the director can tell us to switch positions, I’m throwing her all over the bed. And when the director tells us to “build it to a climax,” we don’t want to, because we don’t want it to end. We’re having waaaaaaay too much fun.

As my sweat is pouring from my forehead, my skin is red and swollen with boiling blood, my breath is in an athletic pant, I’m tingling from all extremities , and the director yells “CUT! I think we got it. Next set-up…,” I’ll have to roll over and remove myself from the room. If there’s cold water like a pool or shower available, I’ll use it.

There’s always this awkward moment as I return from my hiatus and pass my partner in the hall. We’re both now draped in terry-cloth bathrobes, our hair disheveled, our skin still damp, our eyes averted until the last possible moment when we look at each other with sly smiles. High five! “Good scene.” “Good scene.” And off we go. “Yeah, we’re professionals. I wonder… never mind… Hmmm… Good scene. Good scene.”

If I can impart one thing to the evolution of our Species, it’s this: quality time together, building that trust and relationship, breeds chemistry that electrifies the camera, just as well as it does in our bedrooms at home. Live it. Use it. And make some sweet, sweet lovin' of your own.

Next time, we'll share with you what can happen when chemistry fails you entirely.

Monique Parent
is repped by Torque Entertainment and is available for hire as an actor as well as for consultant work.

Mark Weiler is repped by Ben Scanlin at Imagination 9 and is also available for hire as an actor.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Scheduling 101

Let's just get naked....

There’s a long held belief that the nude scenes should be shot first, because if an actor reneges, they can be fired and recast immediately.

You know what? I absolutely agree.

There are many unscrupulous actors who will lie to get the job and they deserve to be fired. Then there are a lot of actors who fully intend to do nudity, but then back out because of pressure from family, significant other, friends and especially other actors. Sorry guys, but you’re fired, too. (Just to be clear, whether an actor chooses to do nudity or not is entirely up to them. Nobody should do nudity if they are not comfortable with it. I believe your word is your word....if you agree to do something, you do it.)

But..... telling your actors you’re shooting the naked stuff first because you don’t trust them might not be the best way to begin. I’m just saying...

Diplomacy is our friend here, people.

The best approach with actors is to tell them you are scheduling the nude scenes first because you want to get them out of the way and concentrate on the story. And really, if your actors have never appeared nude before, they are going to be incredibly nervous! Why have that hanging over their heads wondering, "Oh God, is tomorrow the day? Gulp..."

Though I do caution against shooting ALL the nudity at once. The actors can burn out and start to feel like a hunk of meat rather than the talented actors you know them to be. This will show in performance. You know it will. It can also be somewhat disheartening for the crew - most of the crew usually hasn't read the script. They only know what they see being shot. So if you have a month long shoot, with incredible, dramatic scenes in your film, but the crew only sees naked people the first few days - they will think they are on a porn set and the negative comments will bring your production down.

Only you know what your film is, these are just some guidelines to help you as you plan for nude scenes. There are no absolutes. Just giving you some stuff to think about. Yeah. Like you really needed MORE stuff to think about.

Have you noticed that after working with the same group of people day in and day out, 15 hours a day, they kind of start to..... I dunno... get on your nerves??? Even people you really like. Now imagine if you had to kiss them and roll around naked as though in the throes of passion - when all you really want to to is hit them with the closest available c-stand.

It’s kind of like the idea behind the wrap party. You have the wrap party a week or so after you’re done shooting, everyone gets together and remembers that they used to like each other. I think the same principle applies with shooting nudity and/or love scenes. It’s just a lot easier to make out with a stranger than it is to make out with someone you want to bludgeon.

Morning Sex

I highly recommend scheduling nudity in the first half of the day for several reasons.

Actors are just as insecure about their bodies as anyone else. Probably more so. (Not unreasonable when one considers all the armchair critics who will feel compelled to share their opinions all over the internet.) Most of them will skip breakfast so their stomachs look flatter. Some of them will even skip lunch if their nude scenes are up after lunch. Crazy, isn’t it? Hungry actors are not at their best.. And this is all about getting the best that you can from your talent.

Another prime reason to shoot love scenes early in the day is your basic grunge factor Movie making is a dirty business. (Yet for some bizarre reason, there is never an adequate supply of soap and paper towels. You know it’s true. Just look at your hands at the end of the day.) A hot, sticky, sweaty, dirty business. (God, I love filmmaking!) If you want your actors to cozy up for a passionate scene, do it early in the day when they smell pretty. They will feel much more comfortable with themselves as well as with each other. Keeping a tin of strong mints around is an excellent idea as well - offer them to everyone.
Trust me, your actors will take them and feel much more comfortable behind a deliciously minty mist.

Photos by Don Albrecht

Monday, October 1, 2007

Sock It To Me!

Contributed by Mark Weiler

I am often asked how it is possible for a man to do a nude love scene with a beautiful naked woman without getting aroused. First, it is very difficult to do a love scene WITH an erection. Primarily, where would one hide it? And apparently it needs to be hidden because Hollywood doesn’t yet seem evolved enough yet to embrace the striking visual imagery of the male erection. Secondly, there’s nothing worse than leaving a set with blue balls. Unlike most day-to-day erections, set erections are usually left unsatisfied.

To assist in this process, we are not entirely nude. Men wear “socks” (or "booties") made from knee-hi nylon stockings, and women wear “patches,” which are actually giant band-aids, over their genitals. Both items can be found at any pharmacy in America.

The sock is pulled over the sack and shaft. Excess can be tucked in or tied off. Some wardrobe techs (who are responsible for providing the socks to the performers) also offer a hair tie (rubber band) to secure the sock in place. I do know one particular performer who needed the rubber band to keep the sock from slipping off. His response was, “What do you want from me? I’m Asian!” On the Emmanuelle series, a new make-up artist was curious to peek in on a pending love scene from afar. She gasped and ran back in the room to announce that the male performer was deformed. I went and check and reported that he looked normal to me. She said, “but he has a extra layer of skin down there!” unaware of the sock phenomena.

The sock acts as a numbing agent from stimulation. It also, is a bit of a psychological reminder to the rules of the game. After many years in the genre, the visual of a naked woman is not that arousing to me. It’s a very common, natural state found in any anatomy book. Physical contact and intimate chemistry is what turns me on the most. The general agreement among performers is that there will be no genital contact, and it’s a little difficult to have real intimacy when surrounded by ten fat, hairy, old, clothed crew guys pointing metal objects like mics, cameras, lights and bounce boards at us. However, there have been times when a woman will break the rules and grab or lick me, and I’ll get aroused. At that moment, the sock may then pop off like a slingshot and we’re left with the original dilemma… where to hide it?! I’ve found that pressing it up against the woman’s ass cheek to be the most effective until the director yells cut and re-adjustments can be made.

People also ask me why there is no full frontal male nudity in erotic cinema, and my response is that it is cinema. It is illusion and fantasy. Showing a flaccid penis kills the illusion of true love-making. The sock acts as protection for the artist so that the production company can’t use the full frontal nude photos for profit. We don’t get paid for that, and leaving some things to the imagination can be far sexier.

Unlike hardcore pornography, there is no necessity for male performers to get erections, therefore shyness, nervousness or equipment malfunction aren’t problematic to the production.
Also, unlike pornography, performers are not required to be tested or necessarily use contraception. Therefore it’s safer to leave the temptation out of the equation and just wear the damn sock. Besides, kissing is just as much fun and not nearly as much drama!

Mark Weiler has starred in over twenty erotic films including Visions of Passion, Sex Spa 2, and Naked Players. He also is a regular on the CW series, "What I Like About You," starring Amanda Bynes and Jennie Garth. Mark Weiler is repped by Ben Scantlin at Imagination 9, (323) 874-9991.

Saturday, September 29, 2007

Everything you wanted to know about nudity on film, but didn't know who to ask.

While I'm busy with various personal endeavors as well as working on a film, I would dearly love it if you'd send me your filmmaking questions regarding Nudity on Film. I have a number of articles that I'm working on, but since I've been doing this for so many years, I'm sure I'm forgetting some of the basics.

I won't be answering questions directly, but I will be writing my articles based on the questions that are asked the most.

So bring 'em on, Baby! Send your questions to me at

And don't forget, I am a working actor. I am repped by Peter Scott at Torque Entertainment
I am available theatrically, commercially, as well as for print and consulting work.

Friday, August 31, 2007

Patching 101

Since the only people who are going to be wearing The Patch are female, anybody reading this should not be in possession of a penis. You know, like on their... um... person. All men stop reading now.

Yeah. Right. Like that’s gonna happen.

Okay. You can keep reading. But we are all going to pretend you are not here. And if you get confused because you don't understand female anatomy, too bad.

Let’s start out with some of the basic things you’ll need to know about the patch...


Ever stuck a bandaid on your arm, then when you go to remove it...Yeee-owww??!! It’s stuck to the hair! Now you have to decide - remove it slowly - and hopefully minimize the pain, or rip it off fast and get it over with? This is not a decision you are going to want to make with your private parts. Trust me, I know this....

So you have to get rid of the hair. How you decide to do that is up to you. Shaving is great, but such a sensitive area may be prone to razor burn for some. Sicking an adhesive bandage on an area that is already irritated can be mighty uncomfortable! Personally, I prefer to wax - most salons now offer bikini waxing services, so it’s easy enough to find a place to have it done. What I like about waxing is that I can do it a few days (or even a week or two) before shooting and then not have to think about it again - skin stays smooth for about a month. Waxing isn’t perfect... yeah, it can smart - (ironically, almost exactly duplicating the unpleasant experience of the bandaid on the arm incident) it’s pricey (approximately $50) and it’s freaking embarrassing the first couple of times you do it.

There are a number of “styling” options to consider, as well, regardless of your method of hair removal. I’m going to give you the specifics on the two most common, the “Playboy” and “Brazilian”

  • PLAYBOY: Your panty line sides waxed into a "V" or straight line. Labia is waxed. "In the butt" waxed.
  • BRAZILIAN: The full removal of all bikini hair. "In the butt" waxed also. Sometimes a “landing strip” or “thumbprint” is left in front.

I generally go for the Playboy because it has a very natural, though well groomed look. (And I personally think the landing strip can make the hips looks wider than they actually are) For purposes of filming, I will often keep a bit more hair in the front than I do for...... um...... personal use. I’ve found that it helps hide the existence of the patch a bit more.

This is the brand and size that I’ve used most recently. I’ve found that the tapered ends make for a better fit, and the flexible fabric allows for a bit more mobility.


The Patch, when placed properly, should not be seen. But where is that exactly? Everybody is different, so you’re gonna have to figure that out for yourself. Stand naked with you legs together and look in a mirror. That’s exactly how you should look with the patch on! Look down and identify the apex, place the patch just behind that. (It goes on lengthwise, not sideways) Practice (if you get the chance) before filming. Because trust me, on the day, you’re going to be nervous. And it’s not something that comes naturally. Sticking a bandaid on your genitals is not natural. But you are going to feel a whole lot better on the day if you’ve practiced at home a couple of times!


The Sticky Factor:

We’ve all learned this lesson before... Remember getting that nasty paper cut on your finger, smearing it liberally with antibacterial ointment and then unsuccessfully trying to stick a bandaid on it? Adhesive bandages stick best when applied to a “clean, dry, surface” so keep the lotion away from the kitty!


BTW-Since you’ll probably be doing all of this in a bathroom, might as well go for a precautionary pee before beginning the application. You’re also going to have to repeat this process every time you’re 10-100. Sigh...

Baby Wipes are plentiful on set (Make-up should have them and Wardrobe should as well) and are just about the most convenient way to freshen up on set. Clean the area well with a baby wipe and then, just to be sure, do it again. The baby wipes are very moist, so dry off with a paper towel when you’re ready to apply the patch.


Hopefully, you’ve already figured out your personal placement of the patch, because you practiced at home. If not, well... you’re going to have to figure it out now, aren’t you? Re-read the above regarding placement.

I usually do this standing and then going into a deep plié in second position. Your basic sumo wrestler pose, if you prefer.
  1. Identify starting point for bandage.
  2. Peel off the paper covering the sticky part of the first half of the bandage.
  3. Press the sticky part of the bandage to the starting point... but just enough to let it hang there.
  4. Optional- (but I really recommend doing this!) pull the outer labial lips around the more sensitive parts and kind of.... tuck everything in... Does that make sense? That way the really sensitive portions of your anatomy are in the part of the bandage with no sticky stuff on it, and the portions with the sticky stuff on it are less sensitive.
  5. Smooth the bandage toward the back as you sink into a deep plié or squat.
  6. Remove the second half of the paper covering and continue smoothing the bandage toward the back and outward.
  7. Stand back up, and use you hands to keep pressing out any gaps in the bandage. You might also try to sort of mold it into a pleasant, Barbie doll, anatomical incorrectness.
The reason I do a deep squat or plié as I apply the bandage is so that I get full range of motion when I’m moving in the scene. But I was a ballet dancer for years and God knows I have a tendency to fling my legs about, so most girls aren’t going to care about range of motion as much as I do.

The Patch is not a chastity belt. If is was, your mother would have been slapping them on you before your first high school dance. The only thing the patch prevents is the camera from seeing your private parts, so you can concentrate on what’s important - your acting.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

The Patch

Oh sure. Everyone has heard of "The Patch" but nobody really knows what it is. Or how it's used. Or....why.

Today, I am going to give you the basics on The Patch.

There are lots of different reasons (some valid, some silly) for the patch, but it really comes down to this: The main purpose of the patch is to reassure your actors AND your crew that you are not making porn.

The patch basically makes a Barbie Doll out of your actress. As in rendering her anatomically incorrect, if you know what I mean.

There are a few different methods of patching:

  • If your film is only going to show topless nudity, the simplest way to patch is a flesh colored thong or g-string panty. This clearly covers up the entire genital area, allowing your actress full range of motion while giving the illusion of full nudity. Uhhhh....kinda. The straps or strings on the side will show. If you aren't planning on shooting below the waist, it's not a problem. Nude or flesh tone thongs are easy to find and come in a wide variety of shades to match most any skintone.
  • Another option, is to modify a thong/g-string by cutting off the sides and using toupee tape to adhere the fabric to the skin. Once again, this allows your actress to move freely, knowing that her pubic hair and genitals are completely covered, yet when viewed from the side, she appears fully nude.
  • The most difficult way to patch is for full frontal nudity. The goal is to have your actress appear nude from the side, back and front. This means that the patch can really only cover the genitals. While this may seem ideal from a filmmakers perspective, it can be a bit tricky for your actress and your wardrobe department!

I have two words for you: Adhesive Bandage (Yeah, I could have used that one well known brand, but they aren't giving me any money.)

Look for an Extra Large bandage - at least 2 inches by 4 inches. Also, look for an "island" design (sticky on all four edges, not just two). There are many different ones out there, fabric, plastic, latex (some people are allergic to latex), tan, clear, beige it really doesn't make a whole lot of difference for the most part. Waterproof seems to be a popular choice (though they still come unstuck at the merest drop of perspiration) The important thing isn't what it looks like, hopefully it won't be noticed at all.

Now, your basic 2" x 4" bandage is not going to completely cover your actresses genitals. But hopefully, it will allow her to be freer and more expressive while acting nude, because she knows you won't be showing those parts of her on film.

Coming Attractions:
  • Step by step instructions on how to properly apply The Patch (Hey-just print them up and hand 'em to your actress. How easy is that?!)
  • Patch etiquette.
  • Scheduling.

The Body Check

The Body Check

* The Body Check

* I hate, hate, hate the body check. But it is, I'm afraid, necessary. Too many actors (male and female) will SAY they have no problem with nudity but then balk on the day. Just as they will tell you they are experienced tennis players when they've really only had two lessons back in high school. They are so hungry for a job, they will say anything to get it. Chances are, if an actor is willing to strip down in a room full of people for an audition, they're cool with it. Do you have any idea how difficult it is to stand naked in front of 5 strangers? To stand there naked and be judged? Could you do it?

* Don't do the body check on the first round of auditions. Get yourself a good selection of actors for the second read, and then do the body check. NOTIFY your auditioning actors that there will be a body check - hopefully, they will be smart enough to wear things that come off quickly and don't leave unattractive markings on the body. Don't put the body check on tape.Turn the camera OFF. I know you want to have it on tape to review later. As an actor, I do not want my naked body just standing there in bad flourescent lighting to end up YouTube somehow. Would you?? Trust me when I say that putting your actors at ease right from the beginning will make life easier for everyone. It's probably worth asking them if they are comfortable with nudity while the camera is running though. Also, it's a really good idea to have both sexes represented there in the room. Once again, makes the actors feel safe and respected and encourages them to trust you. And I sure hope you know better than to ask anyone under the age of 18 to strip down - check ID first if you aren't sure.

* The purpose of the body check is not to find the most perfect body in the world and cast your actors based on that. Unless you are doing a classic T & A Bikini type movie, perfection isn't required. You're just making sure they will do what they say they will do, and avoiding any unpleasant surprises later - like massive tattoos (if they aren't appropriate for the character and will require makeup) or tan lines, or whatever.

* The Modified Body Check

* It's not always necessary to see your actors fully nude. If you really only plan on shooting them from the waist up, stripping down to underwear is fine. If you are making a movie with a strong T & A factor and hot bods are the priority, having them strip down to a bikini or bra and panties on the first audition is reasonable, I believe. Once again, let the actors or their agents know what will be required of them. Scheduling note: remember that allowing time while they take their clothes off and put them back on will eat up a huge amount of your day. Time is money, baby...

Please check out my website There's no nudity currently, but I'm working on it.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007

Sex Sells...

A couple of weeks ago, Allen at asked if I would consider writing a short piece instructing novice filmmakers on how to handle on-set nudity with actors. My first reaction was, "what the heck would I say?" I asked Allen for a list of questions to get me started and boy, did they! I decided that I have a lot to say on the subject--much more than a "short piece" would allow me.

Let me start by introducing myself. My name is Monique Parent. I am an actress who has appeared nude in an astounding number of films. If you don't know who I am, my credits can be viewed at IMDB.

I am writing this as a guide for the directors and producers of low budget, independent films. I'll be discussing nudity on film with the assumption that your movie will have an R or perhaps an NC-17 rating based on the parameters set by the Motion Picture Association.

An R-rated motion picture, in the view of the Rating Board, contains some adult material. An R-rated motion picture may include adult themes, adult activity, hard language, intense or persistent violence, sexually-oriented nudity, drug abuse or other elements, so that parents are counseled to take this rating very seriously. Children under 17 are not allowed to attend R-rated motion pictures unaccompanied by a parent or adult guardian. Parents are strongly urged to find out more about R-rated motion pictures in determining their suitability for their children. Generally, it is not appropriate for parents to bring their young children with them to R-rated motion pictures.

An NC-17 rated motion picture is one that, in the view of the Rating Board, most parents would consider patently too adult for their children 17 and under. No children will be admitted. NC-17 does not mean “obscene” or “pornographic” in the common or legal meaning of those words, and should not be construed as a negative judgment in any sense. The rating simply signals that the content is appropriate only for an adult audience. An NC-17 rating can be based on violence, sex, aberrational behavior, drug abuse or any other element that most parents would consider too strong and therefore off-limits for viewing by their children.

Just to keep things simple, I'll be talking about full nudity front and back without showing genitalia of either sex. This is the standard for films with an R rating. Many of my films are considered (by others) to be Softcore, but for me, the line for pornography is the genitals. This will be the standard for my discussions. So if you are looking to "push the envelope", this might not be very helpful.

Most directors in the low budget world, are technical people, in my experience. Even directors who consider themselves to be "actor's directors" are uncomfortable shooting nudity. And rightly so!!

The primary reason to have the element of nudity in a film is money. It helps make almost any film more saleable. Let's face it, if you are making a movie that isn't necessarily genre specific (
ie: horror, action, comedy) the least expensive thing you can add is naked people. One of the mistakes that I see many low budget films make, is adding nudity and sex to the script to help it sell, but because they don't know how to deal with the actors, the end result is.... unsatisfactory.

I'm going to be guiding you through the quagmire of actor's insecurities so that you can sell the movie you have sold your soul (or at least maxed out all your credit cards) to make. Not to sound all New-Age-y, but it's all about trust and respect. When in doubt, personalize.

That's it for this installment. I'll address some practical aspects for on set nudity next time. Detailed info on:
  • The Patch - What is it? Where do we get it? How is it used? Why would we want to?
  • The Sock - So that's where they go when they disappear from the laundry!
  • The Schedule - Reasons to shoot the naked stuff first and why the hell do they shoot sex scenes after lunch?
  • The Lingo - Now that they are naked, what the hell do I do with them????

More stuff when I think of it.

Please check out my website There's no nudity currently, but I'm working on it.