After decades in the entertainment industry, Keira Knightley has decided she’s no longer doing any sex scenes directed by men.
“I don’t have an absolute ban, but I kind of do with men,” the actress said when asked about doing sex scenes directed by men on the Chanel Connects podcast earlier this month.
The 35-year-old actress went on to explain her reasoning more, saying it comes from multiple different places.
“It’s partly vanity and also it’s the male gaze,” she explained during the conversation with filmmaker Lulu Wang and writer Diane Solway. “I feel very uncomfortable now trying to portray the male gaze. Saying that, there’s times where I go, ‘Yeah, I completely see where this sex would be really good in this film, and you basically just need somebody to look hot.’ ”
Luckily, not all of Keira’s experiences with male directors have been bad. The Pirates Of The Caribbean star previously praised director Joe Wright for her iconic library sex scene in the 2007 movie Atonement.
Wright “choreographed the scene within an inch of its life,” Knightley told Vulture back in 2019. “It was absolutely, ‘Foot goes up there, hand goes up there.’ So both me and James [McAvoy] felt utterly comfortable and not exposed, and like we could deal with it. It’s never gonna be fun, but we could deal with it.”
Going forward, there are certain roles she would be open to performing more sexual scenes for, but it would have to be with a female director.
“If I was making a story that was about that journey of motherhood and body acceptance, I feel like, I’m sorry, but that would have to be with a female filmmaker,” she continued. “I don’t want it to be those horrible sex scenes where you’re all greased up and everybody is grunting. I’m not interested in doing that.”