Anne Hathaway Says This ‘The Idea of You’ Sex Scene Is the “North Star” for “Cinematic Sex”

The actress said it “makes it about her pleasure.”

The Idea of You Nicholas Galitzine & Anne Hathaway
(Image credit: Alamy)

Actress Anne Hathaway is opening up about one particularly intimate sex scene in her new movie The Idea of You and why she believes it should serve as a guide for the entertainment industry as a whole.

In a recent interview with Variety, the Ocean's 8 star said she "couldn’t figure out how to breach my wall of shyness" before officially meeting and eventually recruiting Michael Showalter to co-write and direct the film.

"There were so many forces that made Michael the absolute perfect choice for this," Hathaway told the publication, and after admitting that the pair had previously discussed whether or not the film should be directed by a woman given its strong feminist and female-empowerment themes.

When the pair prepared to address the sex scenes in the film, Hathaway says she was inspired by Robbinne Lee's novel—which the film is based on—and how the author describes "intimate acts with the most unbelievable energy."

The Idea of You Nicholas Galitzine & Anne Hathaway

'The Idea of you' starring Nicholas Galitzine and Anne Hathaway.

(Image credit: Alamy)

"In their first physical sexual connection, Hayes brings Solène to orgasm while (she is fully) clothed," Hathaway explains. "That became our North Star in terms of expressing cinematic sex in a way that makes it about her pleasure, while also making the point that a huge part of pleasure is giving someone else pleasure."

In the film, Hathaway portrays a 40-year-old single mother who falls in love and has a romantic relationship with a 29-year-old pop star, played by Nicholas Galitzine.

In March, while walking the red carpet at the SXSW Film & TV Festival, Hathaway talked about the importance of highlighting the story of a sexually confident woman in her 40s.

"Because I can't think of another one?" the actor said at the time, as reported by Business Insider. "Except for maybe 'How Stella Got Her Groove Back,' and it's been—no disrespect to anybody there, but we should have had way more stories like that between 'Stella' and when this one was made."

The Idea of You Nicholas Galitzine & Anne Hathaway

'The Idea of You' with Nicholas Galitzine & Anne Hathaway.

(Image credit: Alamy)

Hathaway went on to say that she has "a lot of friends like Soléne," her character in the film.

"I have a lot of friends who are looking for love, and I know a lot of people—not just 40-year-old women—but people who need to recover from a broken heart and accept love.

"The idea that we could be part of representing someone who has the strength to choose her own heart over the disapproval of the world felt really special to me," she added.

Danielle Campoamor is an award-winning freelance writer covering mental health, reproductive justice, abortion access, maternal mental health, politics, celebrity, and feminist issues. She has been published in The New York Times, Washington Post, CNN, NBC, Vogue, Harper's Bazaar, Marie Claire, InStyle, Playboy, Teen Vogue, Glamour, The Daily Beast, and more.