- Intimacy coordinator Lizzy Talbot choreographed the sex scenes for “Bridgerton.”
- Talbot told Insider she had no idea the show was going to be so steamy when she first got the job.
- “I didn’t think it’d contain much intimacy,” she said. “I thought we might get a kiss.”
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“Bridgerton” has become Netflix’s biggest hit of all time, capturing the attention of 82 million households in just its first month alone. And much of its success has been attributed to the many raunchy sex scenes.
But when the show first reached out to intimacy coordinator Lizzy Talbot â€” who choreographs sex scenes for movies and TV â€” she had no idea it was going to be so steamy.
“When I got the email, the show didn’t have a name. The only thing they said was that it was based on ‘The Duke and I,'” Talbot told Insider, referring to the novel by Julia Quinn that “Bridgerton” is based on.
Since the series was set in England’s Regency era, Talbot expected that it would be quite tame â€” along the lines of Jane Austen novels.
“I didn’t think it’d contain much intimacy,” she said. “I thought we might get a kiss.”
So Talbot, who hadn’t read the book herself at the time she signed on, was in for a surprise when she asked her mother to check it out for her.
“She messaged me back and said, ‘I think you’re going to be busy,'” she said with a laugh. “I was like, ‘Oh whoops, maybe I shouldn’t have sent you to read that.'”
Talbot said she was “shocked” to see “Bridgerton” amass such a massive fan base in such a short amount of time. And she credits part of its success to the show’s visual appeal.
“The production value is so high,” she said. “The costumes, the makeup, the wigs, the set, the location, it’s just incredible, absolutely beautiful.”
“It’s a highly saturated world. Everything is so bright and intense and lavish, and I think it’s just reignited people again after a very boring and very dull lockdown, and offers some escapism. It was never designed to be a history lesson, but just to pique the interest of people for the Regency era,” she added.
Talbot also believes the pandemic has “had a big impact on people’s reactions to the sex scenes.”
“We’re so devoid of socialising, lots of people are devoid of human touch from anyone,” she said.
As she was choreographing the sex scenes for “Bridgerton,” Talbot said she kept in mind that creator and showrunner Chris Van Dusen wanted to show intimacy “through the female gaze.”
“This was not for male pleasure,” she said. “We were going to see something very different.”
“Normally in TV shows you might see, in a very important sex scene, a woman lying naked on the bed and the camera is roving up and down and taking in her body. And that really didn’t happen this time,” Talbot added.
For the scene in which Daphne Bridgerton â€” played by Phoebe Dynevor â€” loses her virginity, a conscious decision was made to keep the camera on her face.
“Phoebe was fairly covered, she was under some sheets, and the focus is on her face looking at Simon, and we don’t often see that,” Talbot said. “We’re looking at her face viewing a naked man for the very first time.”
“It’s not about the curves of her body and what she looks like nude. We’ve got the back of him in the foreground, and her gaze,” she continued.
Talbot said she’s glad she was able to highlight “far more realistic sex scenes” than what movies and TV normally portray.
“They can give people such a false sense of what sexual pleasure should be,” she added. “And it’s the movies that need to adjust, not reality.”
- Read more:
- ‘Bridgerton’ star Phoebe Dynevor says it was harder to film the solo sex scene than any of the partnered ones
- ‘Bridgerton’ director says actors were monitored by country-house staff during sex scenes to make sure they weren’t breaking furniture
- 18 ways Netflix’s ‘Bridgerton’ is different from Julia Quinn’s books
- ‘Bridgerton’ stylist reveals 8 secrets about the show’s hair and makeup