Intimacy.

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Oxygen Films CIC is committed to telling provocative, bold and visionary stories; with particular focus on representation of minority voices. A lot of our films have queer themes and explore sex and sexuality - something we know is sorely misrepresented or not represented at all on screen.

 

We're so proud to be changing the way sex is seen on screen, but especially the way sex and intimacy is shot. We have dedicated programs and teams who are paving the way for a more diverse and inclusive environment which creates a brave and safe space for all cast and crew.

Our Intimacy Policy.

Since our inception in 2016, we've produced content and work which explores sex and intimacy - both explicit and implicit, romantic and hedonistic, innocent and... well... the not so innocent.

We established a policy and practice for how we shoot scenes of intimacy, and are excited to work with actors, movement coaches, intimacy professionals and unions from all over the world to forge a learning which we're constantly developing and growing.

Oxygen Films CIC commits to promoting practices which are inclusive, anti-racist, anti-bias and counter traumatic. We are trauma-informed, not trauma-led.

Our practices only work when they a) work for everyone and b) look out for everyone. We've established five headline practices which encourage a dynamic, explorative and safe environment for cast and crew:

The Headlines.

  • Consent Based (an established culture of consent is conditional, contextual and revocable)

  • Establishment and Respect of Boundaries (including physical, personal, professional and cultural boundaries)

  • De-loaded Practices with De-Sexualised Language (anatomical and anti-biased)

  • Choreography (with ingredients such as distance, levels of touch, tempo and counts etc.)

  • Documentation (a full record, plus intimacy riders, risk assessments and more)

What the heck even is intimacy?

When we say intimacy it can mean quite a lot of things. At its base level, theatrical intimacy is the simulation of intimate physical acts for theatrical purposes. Some examples of intimacy include kissing, embraces, sexual innuendo, revealing clothing, nudity or partial nudity and simulated intercourse.

It may also include heightened imaginative sexual or intimate circumstances for a character. Oxygen are dedicated to integrating consent-based practices into all production environments. In all film-related activities, all participants are expected to abide by the Best Practices. All participants are expected to communicate their boundaries, ask before they touch, and maintain a professional working environment.

Why do we need intimacy coordinators?

We have established the requirements of an intimacy coordinator at Oxygen Films CIC based on what SAG-AFTRA and Theatrical Intimacy Education contributions.

An intimacy coordinator must:

  • Have an awareness of on-screen sexual and intimate storytelling

  • Have communication training

  • Have power dynamic training and awareness

  • Have movement coaching and masking techniques

  • Have knowledge and collaboration regarding the use of modesty garments and barriers for safety, comfort and sexual health.

  • Be able to navigate on-set culture and understands on-set etiquette.

When it comes to certification, we feel very strongly aligned with what the Theatrical Intimacy Education founder, Chelsea Pace says.

Many organisations have come about with certification and accreditation. While the formalised discipline of Intimacy Coordination may be newer, the work itself has been happening in formal and informal ways for a number of centuries.

 

Diversity of approaches is a good thing for everyone. The people leading the field are always leveraging power, for better or for worse, and we believe we need to be deeply critical about the systems we intentionally or inadvertently introduce or perpetuate. We join a number of leading intimacy practitioners and organisations who share the belief that the existence of certification leverages systems of power that promote inequality, exclusion, and the dynamics of deeply problematic models to capitalise (financially or otherwise), on gatekeeping access to knowledge and opportunity.

 

Intimacy work, or more broadly consent work, should shine a light on the long-established hierarchies of power in our industries - not perpetuate them. Intimacy specialists, their organisations, and other powerful players in the field should be a levelling force. Intimacy work evolved out of communal efforts, and was established by the work of many. It should be both open to everyone and everyone’s responsibility because if consent is someone else’s job, it becomes no one’s job.

As more films and shows include scenes of sex and sexuality, we believe that ample training, research and focus us given, and that it is imperative for young and independent voices to platform these diverse and important scenes with safety and care. Otherwise, there is a very real possibility that qualified specialists who have been doing this work for decades are sidelined because they don’t have the finances or time to invest in someone else’s certification to do a job they already know how to do.

Want to find out more?

With our commitment and passion for intimacy, Oxygen Films CIC has a whole team dedicated to intimacy practice in the industry. We are proud to work with Eleanor Hodson who is Head of Intimacy at Oxygen Films.

For more information about our intimacy practice, or if you want to chat with us about all things sex on screen, give us an email here or reach out to Eleanor here.