intimacy coordination

helping directors & talent safely navigate scenes of nudity & sexuality

still from short film, Pachisi.

dir: Sonya JF Barnett


photo credit: Terrence Drake

The position of Intimacy Coordinator is relatively new. Sprouting from the #MeToo movement and Harvey Weinstein scandals, it is the formal response by the film and television industry to help avoid exploitation of talent on set.

Though helping directors and talent navigate scenes of nudity and sexuality has long fallen on the shoulders of many crew during production, a dedicated Intimacy Coordinator now can do all that work, and help keep the production running smoothly. A good IC is trained in sexual health safety, consent, mental health first aid, Closed Set Protocols, movement & choreography, modesty garments & prosthetics, nudity & simulated sex riders, union guidelines, and harassment laws & resources.

An Intimacy Coordinator will assist production, and can even enter at the initial stages to help with casting and riders. We will have discussions with the Director and talent to make sure everyone is on the same page regarding what it desired. Working with particular Heads of Department, the IC will be available and in constant contact throughout production to ensure scenes requiring anything intimate (including implied/actual nudity, kissing & sensuality, simulated sex, sexual violence) are done safely, sanely, and consensually. We are not on set to replace directors; we are on set to assist directors and talent tell their stories. We're there as support to help cast & crew get into the right headspace for intimate scenes.

Intimacy Coordinators go through intensive educational training to become certified. The film & tv industries in Canada, the US, UK, and Australia all have started using ICs for production in recognition of safety needed for intimate scenes (including HBO, Netflix, and Amazon). As it is a fairly new position, we look forward to seeing the IC position become a staple line item when budgeting & shooting. I am currently the only IC in Canada certified by the Intimacy Professionals Association.

My own extensive experience in the field of sexuality, as well as directing & producing erotic content has prepared me to be a knowledgeable and enthusiastic IC. ​I am also queer-friendly and versed in kink/BDSM practices utilizing RACK ethical principles. Becoming a psychotherapist also gives me the expertise to address the mental well-being of all parties involved, especially for the production of emotionally intense scenes.

I can also apply a sensitivity/authenticity reading to your screenplay or manuscript for issues surrounding consent, gender, and sexuality. This helps point out areas of concern wherein the author may not be aware.

You may review my resumé here.


To discuss me working as an IC on your production, please get in touch with my agent, Anthony Marotto (APA).

or phone 212.621.3081.



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© 2019 sjfbarnett | Toronto, Canada