Part of the reason why Edgar-Jones and Mescal were able to portray this level of affection with such accuracy was because the actors had worked with intimacy coordinator Ita O’Brien when choreographing each sex scene. To create a climate on set where both actors felt comfortable and safe, O’Brien constantly checked in with them to receive their consent before proceeding with the directions for the scene, which further contributed to Edgar-Jones and Mescal’s palpable onscreen chemistry.
In fact, in an interview with Vanity Fair, O’Brien said that Normal People directors Lenny Abrahamson and Hettie Macdonald’s approach to sex scenes had changed considerably in response to the #MeToo movement, noting, “With #MeToo and Time’s Up, and all the industry going, ‘We have to do better,’ and then suddenly the codes of conduct are going, ‘We can no longer as an industry tolerate abusive predatory behavior.’
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