From the very beginning, “Nymphomaniac” has been built to scandalize, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that the recently released character posters feature the likes of Shia LaBeouf, Jamie Bell, Uma Thurman and Willem Dafoe seemingly mid-orgasm. But the 14 character posters have everyone talking: How often does a piece of movie marketing feature their entire cast nude?
“Nymphomaniac” comes from controversial director Lars Von Trier, who set out to make an epic film, chronicling the sexual life of a woman, Joe, played by Charlotte Gainsbourg.
Production of explicit sex scenes during production make the character posters seem tame by comparison. Von Trier’s original intention was to cut two versions of the film: one R-rated and suitable for more mainstream theaters; the other, an NC-17 cut that would feature actual sex.
When the film began casting A-listers like LaBeouf and Thurman, some began to question whether Von Trier would be able to follow through on his original plan. When MTV News spoke with LaBeouf before production started, he insinuated that nothing would be held back.
“[The movie] is what you think it is,” LaBeouf said, adding that he’d do “whatever is asked.”
“It is Lars von Trier, making a movie about what he’s making. For instance, there’s a disclaimer at the top of the script that basically says we’re doing it for real. Everything that is illegal, we’ll shoot in blurred images. Other than that, everything is happening.”
Louise Vesth, a producer on the film, later clarified to The Hollywood Reporter how the explicit sex scenes involving the stars would be shot. “We shot the actors pretending to have sex,” he said, “and then had the body doubles, who really did have sex, and in post we will digital-impose the two. So above the waist it will be the star and below the waist it will be the doubles.”