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Andrew Rannells and Tuc Watkins starred together in Broadway’s The Boys in the Band before appearing opposite one another in the Netflix remake featuring the same cast. In the movie, they play a couple on the brink of separation — as their differing perspectives on monogamy, emotional and physical loyalty, and more keep the two at odds. Yet, Tuc Watkins and Andrew Rannells previously shared sex scenes in the dark comedy Black Monday. Tuc Watkins guest-starred as Blair Pfaff’s (Rannells) boyfriend in the show. 

Andrew Rannells and Tuc Watkins
Tuc Watkins and Andrew Rannells attend the 28th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Awards Viewing Party | Rodin Eckenroth/WireImage

During an interview with Seth Meyers, Rannells discussed how intimate scenes with his significant other differed from those he has had to do with other co-stars (who may or may not have been virtual strangers beforehand). He explained why sex scenes with his real-life boyfriend, Tuc Watkins, inspired a new type of anxiety. 

Andrew Rannells talks Tuc Watkins’ role in ‘Black Monday

When talking about a recent season of Black Monday, Andrew Rannells explained, “my boyfriend this season is played by my actual boyfriend, Tuc Watkins, so that was also a real treat.” He explained how they met doing The Boys in the Band on Broadway. Meyers then jumped right into the juicy question everyone at home was wondering. He asked whether sex scenes became “easier.” Rannells said: 

I would say that the anxiety, it’s a new kind of anxiety. On Girls, I had to do a handful of sex scenes. A few with Corey Stoll, who’s so fantastic. But, we didn’t really know each other, so that was very awkward to sort of figure out, “What are you comfortable with?” and “Is this OK?…” 

Andrew Rannells | Late Night with Seth Meyers

Andrew Rannells explains why he became self-conscious when filming sex scenes with boyfriend Tuc Watkins

While sex scenes with Corey Stoll led to some uncomfortable moments, as the two did not know each other, it’s largely up to the person directing the moment to define what the intimacy looks like in this case. Yet, such wasn’t precisely the story with Watkins. Rannells explained: 

So, with Tuc, it was very easy to sort of block it and get into it. But then, when it came time to actually filming it, all of a sudden, I had this realization that I was surrounded by the crew, who had now become friends of mine. And, I thought, I wonder if they’re thinking, “So, that’s what it looks like. That’s what they do at home. That’s how they touch each other.” So, then I got sort of weirdly self-conscious in a different way. But, all that said, it was much easier to do it with somebody that…you know…” 

Andrew Rannells | Late Night with Seth Meyers

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Filming intimate scenes with Tuc Watkins created a new type of on-screen anxiety for Andrew Rannells, as he got a little bit too deep into his thoughts — and the possible thoughts of those surrounding him. However, he did note that it was still easier than taking on such scenes with total strangers, presumably since the comfort — and the romantic dynamic — is already present.