Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

'It's not easy for me to get my kit off' Ruth Wilson on avoiding gratuity in The Affair's sex scenes

rexfeatures_4826723ch.jpg

If there's one drama that caught our attention and triggered binge-watching this year, it's the Golden Globe-winning new series The Affair, starring Dominic West and Ruth Wilson.

The pair play a diner waitress and a teacher who embark on an extramarital relationship one summer. Naturally sex is big part of the narrative and the British acting heavyweights say they didn't approach it lightly. 

“Dominic and I would really ask ourselves what was necessary from all the sex scenes," said Wilson, 33, in a new interview with Vogue. “Neither of us wanted to do things that were gratuitous.”

West, 45, added that they wanted to steer clear of the explicit nudity which frequently occupies popular shows such as Game of Thrones. "Recently there are so many shows where actresses are required to get naked. And it's just tits and sex everywhere. We didn't want it to be like that and we fought hard to make sure everything we did counted for something.”

“It's not easy for me to get my kit off,” said Wilson on the topic of going naked in front of the camera. “I am self-conscious about my body just like any other woman would be with a camera on it. On top of which, the producers didn't provide trainers for us during the five months of shooting so it was up to me to keep in shape.”

Wilson also insisted that both actors share simulated-sex duties: “We used to say that if we were doing sex scenes we needed to do equal orgasm faces.”

The Affair still

Earlier this year Wilson voiced her concerns about the treatment of actresses during sex scenes. 

“Women have to provide the titillation because penises can’t be seen on screen but breasts can,” she told The Edit magazine in January. “It’s assumed that women will get their breasts out and have to get their breasts out and I balk at that. It’s unnecessary and unfair.”

The star also argued that men’s ‘orgasm face’ should appear in films more often. “I kept insisting, ‘Why have I always got to do the orgasm face? There should be a male orgasm face. Why is it always the woman who’s orgasming? Let’s analyse the male orgasm,’” she said.

The Affair stills

Both Wilson and West have been praised for the way they've captured the emotional and psychological effects of infidelity, and while Wilson doesn't condone affairs, she says she isn't in a position to judge.

“I don't judge their actions,” said the actress who is currently single. “I'm 33 and haven't been in a situation where I have had to make their choices.”

“But I do think America is so moralistic and so judgemental that what takes place in the show seems to be shocking.”

Speaking about the popularity of the show, Wilson added, “When I read the script it was one of the best things I read all year, the conceit was really interesting. I get to play these different sides of the character.”

Related

aatcy143_rt.jpg

Could or would you have an affair?

pretty.JPG

'My boyfriend slept with a prostitute before we met'

rexfeatures_3875788cq.jpg

Beach Body Ready advert ruled ‘not offensive’ by UK watchdog

mcgowan.jpg

The feminist Hollywood whistleblower you need to know about

rexfeatures_4244126bc.jpg

Celebrate birthday girl Debbie Harry with a look at her best quotes

the-hangover-movie-still.jpg

'I'm a male feminist but I tend to mask my views in public'

Comments

More

Kate Middleton opens up about motherhood and mental illness

“Your fundamental identity changes overnight.”

by Moya Crockett
24 Mar 2017

Oklahoma lawmaker says rape and incest are ‘the will of God’

Republican was defending a controversial anti-abortion bill

by Georgina Wilkinson
24 Mar 2017

The trailer for Emilia Clarke’s new horror film is utterly terrifying

Even Daenerys might have trouble with this one

by Amy Swales
24 Mar 2017

Emma Thompson reveals Donald Trump once asked her out on a date

Just imagine: Emma Thompson, First Lady of the United States

by Moya Crockett
24 Mar 2017

Kate Winslet recalls being called 'blubber' by school bullies

The Oscar winner had the last laugh

23 Mar 2017

Ryan Gosling explains his reaction to the Oscars Best Picture blunder

He could barely stifle his giggle - but it's not what you think...

by Hayley Spencer
23 Mar 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From January Jones' beauty regime to Emma Roberts' book club

by Nicola Colyer
23 Mar 2017

Brie Larson is playing a very important figure in feminist history

Victoria Woodhull, the first woman to run for president, was a fascinating character.

by Moya Crockett
23 Mar 2017

Piers Morgan is finally quitting social media

If only it was forever

by Amy Swales
22 Mar 2017

Louis Theroux on the one documentary he had to abandon

“I would still love to do it. The world’s my oyster.”

by Georgina Wilkinson
22 Mar 2017