ROLES & TERMS
Lead Intimacy Coordinator: “A term that may be used for an active and ongoing head of the intimacy department who oversees all intimacy responsibilities and additional team members. The role does not necessitate a differentiation in day rate to that of another intimacy coordinator on the show, however a Lead may do more prep work and further tasks as HOD” (Bectu Guidance for Shooting Intimacy, 2022). A Lead IC’s responsibilities include: Intimacy breakdowns and relevant documentation, liaising with other departments, keeping up-to-date with scripts and schedules, and sourcing any other required Intimacy Coordinators (e.g. to cover, or work together on a group scene). They should not take a cut of other ICs’ work on shoot days.
Intimacy Consultant: If there is no intimate content that requires an IC on set, an Intimacy Consultant may be used. They may provide general advice and support to the production. This is not to be used in lieu of an IC when there is sensitive material that needs on-set support, and should not entail remote (e.g. Zoom, calls) consultation on the day of shooting. There must be proper remuneration.
Example: one episode of a TV show requires an actor to take off her top, revealing a sports bra. An Intimacy Consultant facilitates conversations with the director, producer, actor and costume to ensure everyone is clear and on the same page, provides some documentation about the agreed boundaries, and deduces that an Intimacy Coordinator is not required on set. They are paid an agreed fee appropriate for the work done.
Cover IC: Some ICs may prefer to use "Cover IC" when someone steps in for them when they are unavailable. However, if an IC is the IC on the day, then this term is not always necessary, and instead "Intimacy Coordinator" may be used in distinction to the "Lead Intimacy Coordinator". Be transparent with your colleagues and reflect on what feels fair.
Example: an IC works on a film over many months as the sole Intimacy Coordinator, but needs cover for one day for a brief scene. Together they may decide to credit the cover IC as "Cover IC".
If a Cover IC is working on as the IC on the day, they should be remunerated equally for their labour. [anything here of like more experienced vs less experienced?]
The Lead IC may get paid for the prep work they do for the day, but shouldn’t get a cut of the Cover IC’s payment.
If either IC is represented by an agent, ensure clarity over how this will function before engaging in the work.
Intimacy Coach: This is a term incorrectly given to Intimacy Coordinators and shouldn't be used.
Multiple ICs on the day: For scenes with many artists, or complex simultaneous intimate moments, more than one IC is required. A Lead IC should reflect on what feels possible for them to manage without endangering the wellbeing of artists or spreading themselves too thinly.
Some factors in this decision may include:
There are a large number of artists performing intimacy. e.g. a group sex scene with 30 SAs.
Scenes with large numbers of artists performing a level of nudity (but no choreography) may need more costume personnel rather than another IC, depending on context. It may require another IC and more costume personnel.
Two pairs of actors simulating complex and prolonged sexual action, which will be shot simultaneously.
Lead artists and SAs performing intimacy simultaneously.
An artist requires a high-level of support but there are other intimacy aspects in the scene involving other artists.
Discuss the need for multiple ICs with Production in good time, to allow for the relevant discussions and budgeting.
When two ICs work together, discuss what their mode together will be. If a Lead IC has brought an IC on for support for one day, the Lead IC may still oversee and manage the day, making overall decisions on choreography. Alternatively, the ICs may work on a level-footing and in tandem, making individual choices.
Assistant Intimacy Coordinator: If a scene requires minimal extra support, two ICs working together on a shoot day may agree that one is an "Assistant IC". However, generally, if two ICs are working on a day then they are both ICs (or one is a Lead IC and one is IC). Take care and responsibility around ensuring that an Assistant IC is not being used as a cheaper option, when actually another IC is required. Some ICs may never use Assistant ICs.
Example: There is an intimate scene where four actors simulate sex, whilst some nude SAs sit and watch. The Lead IC feels they can largely handle this, but having an extra pair of eyes and person on hand will help ensure the best support.