March 23, 2011 / 10:53 PM / 9 years ago

New book says "Don't Look Now" sex scene was real

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Most anyone who saw the 1973 Nicolas Roeg film “Don’t Look Now” had to wonder whether Donald Sutherland and Julie Christie were actually having sex while shooting their famous love scene in the thriller set in Venice.

In his forthcoming book, former Variety editor Peter Bart writes unequivocally that they did, according to a story in The Hollywood Reporter on Wednesday.

Bart, whose book “Infamous Players: A Tale of Movies, the Mob, (and Sex)” will appear on bookshelves in May, recounted his visit as a young Paramount Pictures executive to the Venice set on that “auspicious day,” according to the Reporter, which obtained an advance copy of the book.

As he arrived on set, Roeg told Bart it was a “good day to come by.”

Bart recalled that as he watched the scene being film, his mind drifted off for a bit until he suddenly focused back on the actors, who were completely naked.

“It was clear to me they were no longer simply acting: they were (having intercourse) on camera,” Bart wrote, using more explicit language.

Bart asked Roeg “Don’t they expect you to say “cut?”

Roeg replied: “I just want to be sure I have the coverage.”

Bart wrote that what he saw was “beyond coverage.”

Another Bart anecdote recalls a very angry Warren Beatty, who had had a serious relationship with Christie, demanding that the scene be re-edited because it was so graphic.

A full version of The Hollywood Reporter story can be found at

Reporting by Christopher Michaud; Editing by Bob Tourtellotte

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