The importance of Paul Mescal and Saoirse Ronan sex scenes in new movie
Paul Mescal and Saoirse Ronan's new movie arrives in cinemas this week.
An Irish star getting a lead role in a big Hollywood movie is always cause for celebration, but to our knowledge, Foe might be the first time that both leading roles in a non-Irish movie are taken by Irish performers.
The story revolves around Hen (Saoirse Ronan) and her husband Junior (Paul Mescal), who live an isolated life on a farm in the southern states of America, at a time in future when our planet has been effectively made inhospitable. One night, Terrance (Aaron Pierre) arrives at their home and informs them that Junior has been selected to be sent off into space for a number of years, in an attempt to find a viable future for mankind.
The impending expiration date on their future together throws the couple into turmoil, with a further spanner hurled into the works when Terrance informs the couple that Hen will still have company... thanks to a robotic copy of Junior left in his place.
In the run-up to the movie's release, we caught up with the movie's director Garth Davis and writer Iain Reid, and you can check out that interview in full right here:
There were many more sex scenes in Foe than we anticipated
During our chat with Davis and Reid, which also covers the initial casting of Mescal and Ronan, as well as what the title Foe actually means, we brought up the fact that there are a lot of sex scenes in the movie than we anticipated.
We asked the creative pair about the importance of these scenes, and Davis told us the following:
"If you ever have a sex scene, it has got to be there for a reason, for the character... unless you're a different type of film-maker! Actually, the sex scenes almost are the goalposts for these big steps that are being taken in the relationship. This kind of reuniting of this couple. So in a way it was very helpful, it was almost like everything in between was a journey to that intimate moment, and the intimate moment was very symbolic of what they've come to in that section.
"So it was very helpful for the actors. In fact, in the rehearsal scenes, we rehearsed the intimate scenes first, and in a strange way, by doing that, we were kind of finding the symbology of the characters' arcs. And it was very helpful to the actors, because they knew what each of those sections meant.
"It was very powerful, and I was very moved by it too. Because it was about Hen reconnecting with what she had lost within herself, and having the courage to open up old feelings and embrace it again. You really feel the film go from this sense of awkwardness and it moves into this complete freedom and spontaneity and curiosity. Which I really loved, feeling that through the characters' lovemaking and personal interactions."
Foe arrives in cinemas in Ireland and the UK on Friday 20 October.
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