Emma Stone has revealed that it was her idea to be naked for the first time in her career in lesbian film The Favourite.

The US star told The Hollywood Reporter that she pleaded with The Favourite‘s director Yorgos Lanthimos to strip off for a scene in which her character, Baroness Abigail Masham, is discovered in bed with Queen Anne, who is played by Olivia Colman.



Stone said that she was initially meant to be covered up in a scene where her on-screen rival for the queen’s attentions—Rachel Weisz’s Sarah Churchill, Duchess of Marlborough—finds Abigail and Queen Anne in bed together.

Emma Stone lies, shocked, on the ground in new lesbian film The Favourite
The script called for Emma Stone’s character to be covered with a sheet (fox searchlight pictures)

“I had the sheet up around me,” she explained. “And as we were shooting it and we did a few takes, I said: ‘Can I please just be [naked]?’

“‘I think it’s going to give Sarah something to look at when she sees that I’m not just under the sheet covered up.’

“Olivia was like: ‘No, don’t do it!’ Yorgos was like: ‘Are you sure that’s what you want to do?'” Stone recalled.

“And I was like: ‘Absolutely.’ I chose to do it. I was like, this makes sense to me. It’s an absolute [Stone flips the bird] to Sarah.”

Olivia Colman and Emma Stone attend the UK premiere of The Favourite
Emma Stone said she “absolutely” wanted to be naked in the lesbian scene with Olivia Colman (Gareth Cattermole/Getty)

The Favourite‘s lesbian sex scenes were popular with its stars

In August, Olivia Colman said that having sex with Emma Stone on screen was “awfully fun.”

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The Golden Globe-winning actress added: “It’s as though we think we invented sex, but we didn’t, it’s been going on for quite a long time.”

Stone agreed with Colman, who is set to take her bow in Netflix’s third and fourth seasons of The Crown as Queen Elizabeth II.

Olivia Colman and Emma Stone in The Favourite, which is about Queen Anne and two royal advisors who fight for her attention
Both Olivia Colman and Emma Stone agreed that they enjoyed the lesbian sex scenes (fox searchlight pictures)

The Favourite star, who won the best actress Academy Award last year for her performance in La La Land, told Colman: “It was really fun having sex with you too.”

She later clarified: “We didn’t really!”

Lesbian films are on the up

As well as The Favourite, the past year has seen numerous other critically acclaimed films starring women who love women.

This includes Keira Knightley-starring Colette, a biographical drama detailing the life of French novelist Sidonie-Gabrielle Colette, who had several lesbian affairs while married to Henry Gauthier-Villars.

Olivia Colman, Rachel Weisz and Emma Stone all star in The Favourite, which has received rave reviews so far
Emma Stone with her co-stars in the lesbian film, which upends period drama stereotypes (Gareth Cattermole/Getty)

Knightley explained earlier this month that the lesbian sex scenes in Colette were toned down so that they weren’t “seen through the male gaze.”

Last month, barrier-breaking Kenyan film Rafiki won three awards at two US film festivals, despite being banned in its home country.

The Kenyan film board allowed Rafiki a temporary cinema release in September, in order for it to qualify for Oscars eligibility in the best foreign language film category. The film shattered box office records in just a week.




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