That ‘fear’ of the sex scene with Richard Gere. The backstory on Julia Roberts

Pretty woman is the film signed by Garry Marshall which is broadcast this evening at 21.25 on Rai 1. The film, which is shown again at more or less regular intervals on the small screen, can be seen as a sort of reinterpretation of Cinderella which, over the years, has proven to be a real cult phenomenon of the seventh art.

Pretty woman, the plot

Vivian (Julia Robertslisten)) is a woman who works as a prostitute on the busy streets of Los Angeles. Putting aside her romantic dreams, Vivian has developed a practical and cynical side that allows her to put aside the so-called “American dream” and do whatever it takes to survive. One night, while she is “on duty”, Vivian meets Edward Lewis (Richard Gere), a wealthy businessman who is lost on Hollywood Boulevard and is unable to drive his rental car. Thus Vivian decides to accompany him to the hotel in the hope of a nice tip. Edward, however, asks her to stay and spend the night with him, on payment from her.

The next day, when Vivian is getting ready to go back to her home and her usual life, Edward makes her a really tempting offer: for an exorbitant amount he asks her to stay by his side for the whole week in which he will be in Los Angeles. , keeping him company and, above all, agreeing to participate in some social events related to the work that the man is trying to complete and which concerns the acquisition of a company. The business relationship between the two protagonists seems to be going very well and while Vivian also makes friends with the porter of the rich hotel where she sleeps (Hector Elizondo), Edward begins to feel unexpected feelings for the woman he shares a room with.

The Great Fear of Julia Roberts

Pretty woman was so successful with audiences that, in a short time, Garry Marshall’s film became something of a cornerstone of the genre. Indeed, in the cinematographic field, Pretty woman has become a real evergreen which not only never tires the public, but which represents a standard, a yardstick for all romantic comedies who hope to have a long life in cinema. The merit of this success must certainly be sought in the strong chemistry that exists between the two main performers: despite the fact that they were almost twenty years apart at the time of filming – Julia Roberts was twenty-two years old, while Gere was already forty -, between the two actors there is a very strong chemistry that makes falling in love between the two protagonists even more believable. As read on IMDB, Julia Roberts and Richard Gere showed strong chemistry from first reading the script. Gere, however, was not yet convinced of wanting to accept the role in Marshall’s film and, indeed, was more inclined to refuse the offer. It was Julia Roberts who pushed him to accept, passing him a yellow post-it on which she had written: “please say yes”.

But, despite this strong chemistry and a friendship that has survived to the point of working together again in If you run away I’ll marry you the making of the film suffered some hitches, especially as regards the more intimate scenes, those related to sex. As can be read on the website ofInternet Movie Databaseindeed, Julia Roberts she was really, really nervous about having to shoot a sex scene with Richard Gere. Her nervousness was such that, right during the filming, she swelled a vein on her forehead, demonstrating her tension, but also the commitment she was putting into trying to overcome thatimpasse. At that point the director Garry Marshall he got into bed with the two actors and, together with Richard Gere, massaged Julia Roberts’ forehead until the veins returned under the skin, without being seen. As if that weren’t enough, Julia Roberts also developed a kind of urticaria at the thought of having to shoot the sex scene. At that point she was given a calamine lotion to spread on the irritated areas: only at the end of these “maneuvers” was it possible to shoot the scene and the greatness of an actress like Julia Roberts can be seen from the fact that, watching the film, no one would ever notice his nervousness.

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About David Martin

David Martin is the lead editor for Spark Chronicles. David has been working as a freelance journalist.

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