SAG-AFTRA doubles down on on-set intimacy guidelines in wake of #MeToo

SAG-AFTRA doubles down on on-set intimacy guidelines in wake of #MeToo
An intimate scene from The Boy Next Door (2015). Photo: YouTube | MovieClips

SAG-AFTRA⁠ — which stands for Screen Actors Guild‐American Federation of Television and Radio Artists ⁠— announced on Sunday that it will implement new guidelines and policies for on-set intimacy. The labor union is making the move in an effort to address issues of sexual misconduct plaguing the entertainment industry in the #MeToo era.

“The guidelines will seek to establish new, relevant policies for nudity and simulated sex; define the duties and standards for intimacy coordinators on productions, and specify acceptable training, vetting and qualifications of intimacy coordinators,” the union said.

The guild has partnered with Intimacy Directors International (IDI) co-founder, Alicia Rodis to formulate the new guidelines. Cooperation from intimacy coordinators with the IDI and other trained providers is also expected.

“Our goal is to normalize and promote the use of intimacy coordinators within our industry,” Gabrielle Carteris, president of SAG-AFTRA said. “Intimacy coordinators provide an important safety net for our members doing hyper-exposed work. At a time when the industry still needs to make great changes, our initiative will ensure the safety and security of SAG-AFTRA members while they work and respects the boundaries of actors.”

“These specifically implemented guidelines will allow productions to run more efficiently while the specialized support empowers both cast and crew,” says the union’s national executive director, David White. “We look forward to working with our industry partners and allies to ensure these guidelines work for our members and others on set. Many productions are already using intimacy coordinators so it is imperative to codify and standardize the work to best benefit SAG-AFTRA members and the industry as a whole.”