Remember that scene in Do The Right Thing? No, not that one – the one with Rosie Perez, and the ice cube, and Rosie Perez' nipple? In an interview published in Spike Lee's sorta-memoir, That's My Story And I'm Sticking To It, the actress says that she still feels "exploited" by the sex scene, which Lee both directed and starred in opposite of her. The 1989 film was Perez' debut, and according to the actress, she wasn't exactly comfortable with the experience. "I had just lost my virginity in college. I found [the scene] much more exploitative than what I had read [in the script]. Eventually I burst into tears and I said, 'Don't keep filming.'"

I've thought a lot about that scene ... no, not like that. It's just rare that a filmmaker has the audacity to write, direct, and star in a scene that requires him to rub ice cubes all over an ingenue's naked body. In fact, it's kind of surprising that it's so rare – one would think that a lot more young men might suddenly become interested in filmmaking if they knew this kind of activity could potentially be involved. I kid, but Rosie's not laughing. "It was irresponsible to put me in that position," she says. "He was the older person, the captain of the ship." That's kind of a copout, don't you think? Sexual politics are complicated, but once you're naked in front of a movie crew, things have a way of sort of reducing down to black and white. The best thing about 70s and 80s feminism is that it really made that whole "our bodies, ourselves" thing kind of hard to ignore. Couldn't Ms. Perez have walked her body off the ship if she didn't like the way the captain was steering things?
categories Cinematical