Some actors can be rather squeamish when it comes to shedding their clothes for a movie. It’s understandably a nerve-wracking experience that they just can’t bring themselves to face.
But it turns out that Daniel Radcliffe, who shot to fame as Harry Potter in the wizarding franchise, has no such qualms about stripping down to his birthday suit for films. That’s according to Kill Your Darlings’ director John Krokidas, who as part of a piece from Vulture about shooting sex scenes opened up about just how gung-ho the English actor was in the film’s more intimate sequences.
Kill Your Darlings saw Daniel Radcliffe portray Allen Ginsberg, who wasn’t just one of the world’s most famous poets, but, as John Krokidas himself insisted, “was one of the most renowned gay artists of the 20th century.” Because Allen Ginsberg is such a prominent figure in the LGBT community, John Krokidas admitted, “I felt that not including his sexuality as part of the story would be a crime.”
Daniel Radcliffe was just as willing as John Krokidas to explore this side of Allen Ginsberg, too, which meant that he’d have to engage in a love scene with actor Dane DeHaan, who was portraying Lucien Carr in Kill Your Darlings. John Krokidas admitted that Radcliffe had “no issue doing the scene whatsoever.” The filmmaker added the following.
“His only question was, ‘Just so I know, how naked do you want me to be — movie-naked or Equus-naked?’ I said, ‘I hate when people block sex scenes in order to play hide-the-genitalia — that feels so forced. So let’s just block it, and if it falls into frame, we’ll shoot it.'”
Daniel Radcliffe’s reference in the above quote to Equus is regarding the play that he performed in back in 2007 when he was just 17-years-old. In his role, Daniel Radcliffe had to perform scenes fully nude in front of a live audience, which caused quite a bit of controversy both because of his age and the fact that he was still in the throes of portraying Harry Potter in the beloved children’s franchise.
Obviously, this experience didn’t scar Daniel Radcliffe so he was more than willing to shed his clothes for Kill Your Darling’s sex scene. However, there was just one problem. A problem that John Krokidas only thought about after he’d asked Daniel Radcliffe to do the nude scene, and which involved a rather specific part of his anatomy. John Krokidas explained,
“But then I remember going, ‘Oh s***: You’re British, and Allen Ginsberg is one of the most famous Jews of the 20th century. On second thought, I don’t think we’re going to go Equus-naked.'”
But John Krokidas was in luck because Daniel Radcliffe was still able to shoot the scene, as his body was actually well equipped to do Allen Ginsberg justice. John Krokidas added the following.
“And Dan said, ‘John, my mother’s Jewish, and I’m circumcised. Play the scene any way you want.’ God bless Daniel Radcliffe — he commits to all of his actions.”
But despite all of this upheaval and questioning towards Daniel Radcliffe, it turned out the John Krokidas didn’t even use the fully nude scenes of the actor in the 2013 indie drama.
In fact, back in 2014 while discussing the project with Entertainment Weekly Krokidas confessed that he actually “cut three penises out of [Kill Your Darlings].” Krokidas expanded on these cuts and said the following.
“One, because an actor politely asked me not to include it. The second, believe it or not, was ultimately too distracting from the moment, and I was wanting you to emotionally experience a moment with one of the characters, but instead you were looking at their junk.”
“But third, one of them was there for a character reason. It’s the one that’s included in the deleted scenes. And I don’t want to say too much about it, or whose it was. But as you’ll see by having it there, it hinted and it winked to something about the character that I realized would be best experienced later on in the film.”
[Featured Image by Sony Classics]