Industry insight

What is an intimacy coordinator and why should they be on set?

Intimacy coordinator
Written by Bethany Unwin

For Dance Routines we have Choreographers. With stunts, a stunt director is hired. So why for intimate scenes, is there not always an intimacy coordinator?

During the 2021 BAFTA Award Ceremony, Michaela Coel won the award for leading Actress. In her acceptance speech she thanked her intimacy coordinator. In addition to being nominated and awarded for her performance in ‘I May Destroy You’, Michaela also received recognition for creating the series. I May Destroy You is a series on sexual assault. Michaela thanked her intimacy coordinator, for her work during the filming of the series. Michaela said, ‘she put in place physical, emotional and professional boundaries, it allows the industry to make work without being exploited or abused’.

After Coel’s speech, highlighting the incredible work of intimacy directors, we hope this will bring change. Intimacy co-ordinators are becoming normalised on set, however there is still a long way to go. Often, hiring an intimacy co-ordinator can just be a box ticking exercise rather than hiring a person to look after the cast and crew. After sharing their importance, for all cast and crew on set to feel comfortable, this will hopefully start a movement. In the future, we hope Intimacy co-ordinators becomes a permanent role on all sets.

Want to hear from other professionals that do amazing work behind the scenes? Click here to read our interview with Dominic Webb, head of costume and makeup at October Studios!

Do you want to know more about Intimacy co-ordinators? Want to find resources, find out how to train? Or hire an intimacy co-ordinator? Click here!

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