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Claire Foy on Lisbeth’s sexuality and why she objected to a lesbian sex scene

Claire Foy on Lisbeth’s sexuality and why she objected to a lesbian sex scene

Claire Foy sporting black hair and a tattoo on her neck for the role of Lisbeth Salander.

English actress Claire Foy is back on the big screen donning Lisbeth Salander’s leather outfit and that now iconic dragon tattoo.

The anti-heroine created by the late Swedish novelist Stieg Larsson returns in The Girl in the Spider’s Web, directed by Uruguayan filmmaker Fede Álvarez.

The movie is the second chapter in the Millennium film series. This installment is an adaptation from the novel by David Lagercrantz, who continued the story after Larsson’s sudden death in 2004.

Lisbeth dates both men and women

Lisbeth, who dates both genders, will have to solve a family mystery this time around. While carrying suitcases full of dildos.

Foy has already played a character attracted t0 women in 2011 TV movie The Night Watch. With the role of Lisbeth, The Crown star is back portraying a sexually fluid woman.

The actress, who also stars in David Chazelle’s First Man opposite Ryan Gosling, discussed Lisbeth’s sexuality in an interview with

‘I loved that she had such an open attitude, not only to her own sexuality but to everybody else’s, a kind of non-judgment [and an] understanding that there should be no judgment about people’s sexuality or what they identify themselves as,’ Foy said.

‘There should be more protagonists who have that message. It’s very important.’

Foy said she played Sawyer Valentine as a bisexual character

Moreover, Foy opened up on her character in Steven Soderbergh’s psychological horror Unsane.

‘I always thought my character Sawyer Valentine in Unsane was bisexual. I just did,’ she said.

Furthermore, she added: ‘I felt she was a very modern, young woman, and I think there’s an openness with this generation that definitely wasn’t around when I was younger. A kind of openness and understanding about sexuality and how it can be open in that way, that didn’t really exist when I was in school, so I think Sawyer probably grew up slightly with a bit more of that mentality.’

A gratuitous lesbian sex scene

Andreja Pejic in The Girl In The Spider's Web | Photo: Columbia Pictures
Andreja Pejic in The Girl In The Spider’s Web | Photo: Columbia Picture

Foy also revealed she asked Álvarez to cut a gratuitous lesbian sex scene from the movie.

Lisbeth has a relationship with Sofia, played by trans model and actress Andreja Pejić. According to the original script, the two women were supposed to have sex at the very beginning of the movie.

‘[…]  I questioned it. I said, “What is the purpose of this? What are you trying to tell the audience with this sex scene? Are you trying to say that she’s a pansexual woman and here she is having sex with a woman and this is an important part of her character?” And I said, “Or is it titillation?”’ she said.

She further explained how female sex scenes are often shot through a male gaze to appeal to the male audience.

‘Lesbian relationships in movies are often used not as truthful depictions of two women making love with one another. They’re often a way of titillating the male and appealing to men. And so I asked pretty openly and bluntly: “How would you shoot it? Why is it necessary here? What are you trying to say?”’ she explained.

She managed to change Álvarez’s mind.

‘People have sex, therefore sex scenes need to be portrayed in films. But I do think it needs to be portrayed for a reason. There has to be a dynamic that’s interesting, and it needs to be not just at the opening of a film. Two women having sex with each other for no real purpose, just to say, “Oh, by the way, she has relationships with men and women,”’ she continued.

‘And so Fede was like, “I’ve thought about it and I think, actually, we don’t need it. I think it sends the wrong message.”’

That suitcase full of dildos

Lisbeth’s plan also involves a suitcase full of dildos, a provocative trick in the style of the hedgy hacker.

‘I thought it was brilliant. It’s proper Lisbeth,’ said Foy.

‘Not only is she doing some sort of espionage but she also will enjoy the humor of knowing that all those kind of really macho airport security guys will have to search a case of dildos.’

Watch the trailer below:

The Girl in the Spider’s Web hits US theaters today (9 November) and UK theaters on 21 November.

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