A new movie opened last Friday in select cities. Shame is about one man’s journey as a sex addict in New York City.
Michael Fassbender plays Brandon, a heterosexual male who is addicted to sex. He just cannot get enough.
At one point in the film he goes to a gay bathhouse just to get laid.
Fassbender tells Time Out Chicago about shooting the gay bathhouse scene.
It doesn’t become about homosexuality or heterosexuality, it becomes about a fix, and where can I get my fix? People think, Wow, this is his descent into hell, and it’s not the case. I mean, we shot in a real club. That is a real scenario for many addicts that are predominantly heterosexual and they end up with a guy. You put yourself into a scenario that you wouldn’t do in a normal situation because your choice is gone.
He also tells The Guardian
At first, Fassbender tried to do research into sex addiction in Britain, but couldn’t find enough people willing to talk about it, so transferred to New York. The addiction is, in a way, just a metaphor – “Scratch the surface of what’s socially normal. I suppose in some way all of us have something we display to the public and things we feel too ashamed of or uncomfortable with to reveal to other people” – but one that required a lot of courage in the performers. Mulligan was, he says, “brave and willing to throw herself into it. There’s no safety net, and that ma
kes it exciting and scary; [it] requires the actors to trust each other and test each other and surprise each other.” Fassbender is not, he says, “very exhibitionist” when it comes to taking off his clothes. “I was self-conscious, for sure, but it was something I had to get over very quickly. Those scenes are really where you get an insight into the guy’s psyche. When you see him naked, it’s in more ways than one. I had to be on the ball and not thinking about those things. And you try to make sure that your partner in the scene is comfortable. I’d say, ‘Let’s go for it now and it’ll be over soon.’ It sounds terrible, like a really bad chat-up line.” He laughs. “Quite threatening, actually.”
What was McQueen’s advice?
“He’d say, ‘Surprise me’.”