Skip to main content

Sharon Stone On Being Pressured To Sleep With Her Co-Stars For On-Screen Chemistry

Sharon Stone holding a cigarette in Basic Instinct
(Image credit: (TriStar))

Sharon Stone and her sex symbol status will always be synonymous with her Hollywood career. The award-winning actress memorably brought the heat to movies like Basic Instinct, Total Recall and Casino. Unfortunately, during the time Stone was a huge leading lady, the industry was a much more volatile place for women than it is today. In her upcoming memoir The Beauty of Living Twice, she recalls some troubling treatment toward her on film sets, including being pressured to sleep with co-stars.

The Basic Instinct actress remembers a lot of conversations around her regarding whether she was “fuckable” in the eyes of top brass in Hollywood. In an excerpt of her book coming in late March, Sharon Stone said she had a producer invite her to his office and explain why she should have sex with her co-star so the pair to create on-screen chemistry. Following the conversation, her co-star apparently made a number of passes at her too (which she believes was at the request of the producer), continuing with these words:

I’ve had other producers on other films just come to my trailer and ask, ‘So, are you going to fuck him, or aren’t you? … You know it would go better if you did.’ I take my time and explain that I am like the nice girl they grew up with, and get them to recall that girl’s name. This leaves us all with a little bit of our dignity.

Stone said she challenged one of the producer's expectations for her to sleep with a co-star, explaining to him that she should not be responsible for the male actor's inability to perform “one whole scene out in the test,” according to her recollection. Instead of giving into the pressure to have sex with her male co-star, she speaks on The Beauty of Living Twice (per Vanity Fair) about asking instead for someone who “could deliver a scene and remember his lines.” Pretty simple of an ask, right? According to Sharon Stone, she was deemed “difficult” for saying it.

The actress famously had a brief full-frontal nude moment in 1992’s Basic Instinct in the famous and controversial interrogation scene, which she also speaks out about in the memoir. Expanding on previous comments, Sharon Stone explains that she was coerced into flashing her crotch without underwear on. According to the 63-year-old actress, she was told that her white underwear was “reflecting the light” and the crew couldn’t “see anything” on set.

It’s certainly a concerning aspect of Sharon Stone’s career to hear about, also because if multiple producers said it to her, chances are other actresses dealt with something of the same variety on film sets in the '90s. Stone also addressed trying to allow space for amends years later between her former colleagues with these words:

To some of the less violent trespassers of my personal space—the ones who have threatened to fire me if I didn’t put out, for example—I suggested recently that if they would only sit with me and talk it out, I would let it go, without revealing their offensive behavior. I believed that a kind of truth-and-reconciliation discussion might be a good start. But so far, not one of them has manned up.

It’s unfortunate to hear about Sharon Stone’s behind-the-scene experiences but, by using her voice, she can perhaps expose some corruption within the Hollywood system. The 2021 celebrity memoir, The Beauty of Living Twice, hits shelves and online stores on March 30.

Sarah El-Mahmoud

YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.