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Jemima Kirke weighs in on Penn Badgley’s sex scene request

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Jemima Kirke has spoken out about her brother-in-law, actor Penn Badgley’s request to cut down on sex scenes in his hit Netflix series You.

In an episode of his podcast, Podcrushed, Badgley, who has been married to Kirke’s sister Domino since 2017, revealed that he asked You writer Sarah Gamble “‘Can I just do no more intimacy scenes?’”

His request for the cutdown of the show’s raunchy sex scenes comes out of respect for his marriage. “Fidelity in every relationship, including my marriage, is important to me. It’s got to the point where I don’t want to do that,” he added, and shared that Gamble “didn’t even bat an eye” and “came back with a phenomenal reduction” of the intimate scenes for season four of the show.

Joe and Kate ended season four as lovers despite Joe’s confession. CREDIT: Netflix

In a recent interview with GQ, Kirke shared her thoughts on Badgley’s request. “I’m not saying I agree with it. But I do understand,” she said. “I’ve never dated an actor but I’d imagine it would be difficult to see or know that your spouse is being physical with someone else.”

“That’s not to say I will partake in that view of things,” she continued. “Because to be honest it’s never really happened to me. I’ve never done a sex or a love scene and come home and not loved, or been as attracted to my spouse.”

The actor did share that the desire to be more sparing with sex scenes would probably “go further” as time goes on.

Kirke is known for her role as Jessa in all six seasons of the comedy series Girls, which ran from 2012 to 2017. Speaking on the sex scenes she had filmed for the show back then in the interview with GQ, the actress admitted that the approach was “very different” compared to the present day post #MeToo era.

Zosia Mamet, Allison Williams, Lena Dunham and Jemima Kirke attend The New York Premiere of the Sixth & Final Season of
Zosia Mamet, Allison Williams, Lena Dunham and Jemima Kirke attend The New York Premiere of the Sixth & Final Season of “Girls” at Alice Tully Hall on February 2, 2017 in New York City. Credit: Sylvain Gaboury/Patrick McMullan / GETTY

“We thought that by being less precious about our bodies, and by not thinking of them as something to hide or protect against the male gaze, that was our version of feminism at the time. And I felt it, I liked it, I agreed with it. It was not in line with what #MeToo became. It didn’t really catch on,” she explained.

In other news, You was renewed for a fifth and final season. Speaking to NME about the ending of the series, Badgley shared “How it ends will really, really matter [to that legacy],” he says. “And that’s up to us; we need a satisfying ending. The question becomes: ‘What is satisfying for us [as viewers], not for Joe?”

Kirke currently stars in the Apple+ limited series City On Fire. 

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