Sarah Silverman’s ‘Brutal’ Sex Scene That ‘Hurt for Days’ Wouldn’t Fly in Hollywood These Days

Once when talking to Howard Stern on his show, comedian, actor, and writer Sarah Silverman told a disturbing story. The infamous radio DJ asked Silverman, who is known for her pointed references, about the topic of rape in her comedy. The celebrity told the story of feeling violated while filming a sex scene in a comedy.

How Sarah Silverman became famous

Sarah Silverman sex scene
Actor Sarah Silverman attends the 43rd AFI Life Achievement Award Gala at Dolby Theatre on June 4, 2015 in Hollywood, California. (Photo by Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic)

Sarah Silverman began performing standup as a teenager. After dropping out of college, she joined the cast of Saturday Night Live in 1993. However, she was fired after only a few performances.

Silverman continued performing in clubs in the ’90s. She gained notoriety for her appearances on The Larry Sanders Show. Her first standup special, Sarah Silverman: Jesus Is Magic, aired in 2005. 

The star struck it big with the The Sarah Silverman Program, which ran from 2007 to 2010. She won an Emmy for outstanding original music and lyrics in 2008 for her parody song “I’m F***ing Matt Damon.” She followed it up with another Emmy in 2013 for her comedy special Sarah Silverman: We Are Miracles.

As for the big screen, Silverman began appearing in small comedy roles in features like There’s Something About MaryHeartbreakers, and School of Rock. She voiced Vanellope von Schweetz in both Wreck-It Ralph and the sequel Ralph Breaks the Internet. Silverman also appeared in A Million Ways to Die in the WestTake This Waltz, and I Smile Back. She’s since branched out into drama with The Book of Henry and Battle of the Sexes.

Silverman described the ‘brutal’ sex scene she filmed

Silverman insists she never takes subjects like rape lightly in her standup routines. As she told Stern (via The Mirror), there’s one sex scene she filmed for a comedy she described as “brutal” where a “completely naked” background player simulated sex roughly against her.

The actor explained she had experiences in her life and had filmed such scenes before. No one listened to her concerns and the end result was Silverman feeling “violated” and injured. “It hurt to walk for days,” she told Stern.

While she was wearing underwear made to look invisible, she described feeling violated. Despite your definition of assault, it was what the actor deemed a wake-up call. 

Today, protocols for sex scenes have changed

Sex scenes in movies and TV shows range from awkward to dangerous for actors, with big cameras, the director, and plenty of crew members around. Multiple stars have spoken about these experiences over the years, like Meryl Streep and Keanu Reeves. But things have changed over time, with adjustments made to ensure a safe environment for all involved.

In simulating sex between actors these days, pillows are often placed between them. Some productions use prosthetics and body stockings. More recently, studios have employed intimacy coordinators to work on sets like Bridgerton. So had Silverman’s scene been filmed today, chances are the kind of experience she had wouldn’t fly.

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