• Interviews

Golden Globes Around the World Podcast: Ita O’Brien, Intimacy Coordinator

One of the newest and most important fields in the entertainment industry is the role of Intimacy Coordinator. But what, exactly, does this mean? Our newest episode of the “Golden Globes Around the World” podcast series with Intimacy Coordinator, Ita O’Brien, will answer that question, and more.

Ita is a pioneer in this field, founding her UK company ‘Intimacy on Set’ in 2018, shortly after the #MeToo movement hit its peak. However, she’s been working behind the scenes since 2014 to develop ‘best practice’ intimacy guidelines that are now widely adopted within the industry to create safe, fair and dignified work for everyone. As well as training other intimacy coordinators, Ita continues to develop tools that will help deal with new issues that may arise around intimacy, sexual content and nudity on TV and film sets, as well as theatre stages.

In our new podcast episode, Ita explains to HFPA member Michele Manelis the challenges of being accepted by skeptical filmmakers and studios who are resistant to being forced to have her on set. She also talks about choreographing sex scenes and negotiating nudity between talent and filmmakers and unexpectedly highlights why menstruation can also force a set to pivot during filming. Her primary goal is not only protecting actors on sets, but everyone else too.

In 2019, she was one of the first intimacy coordinators hired on set, for the 2019 Netflix series Sex Education – featuring a largely adolescent cast dealing with very adult subjects and other credits include; the TV series I May Destroy You, Normal People, The Serpent Queen and Vikings Valhalla as well as the filmsEmpire of Light, Lady Chatterley’s Lover and the new April release, The Pope’s Exorcist, starring Russell Crowe.