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Penn Badgley Told He Makes ‘You’ Masturbation Scenes ‘Creepy’

  • Penn Badgley opened up about filming masturbation scenes for the hit Netflix show “You.”
  • He said that directors have told him to make the scenes “less creepy” by closing his eyes.
  • He also said he has argued back with them saying that his character should be “creepy.”

Penn Badgley said that he has been told multiple times while filming “You” that he makes masturbation scenes too “creepy.”

Badgley stars in the hit

Netflix show as Joe Goldberg, a murderer who gets obsessed with and stalks numerous women in the show. 

During the latest episode of “Podcrushed” — which Badgley cohosts with Sophie Ansari and Nava Kavelin to reminisce about growing up in middle school — the “You” star spoke about the difficulty of filming his numerous masturbation scenes for the show.

“Every time I’ve done a masturbation scene… I’ve always gotten the note to make it less creepy,” Badgley told his cohosts and his “Gossip Girl” costar Chace Crawford. “They say like, ‘Close your eyes or go faster or go slower.’ I’m like, ‘What? This man is f*cking murdering people, and he’s masturbating in the street. You’re saying I’m making it creepy? How is it I’m the one making it creepy?'”

Badgley added that during his first masturbation scene in season one, director Lee Toland Krieger tried to guide him to make the scene less creepy. 

Badgley in the recent season of “You.”
John P. Fleenor/Netflix

“I just remember I wouldn’t close my eyes and the director came up to me,” Badgley recalled. “He was like ‘Buddy, I think you gotta close your eyes.'”

Badgley said he initially tried to argue with the director, saying that the creepiness is “the f*cking point.”

“That’s just the strange line that we’re always walking on our show,” Badgley added. “Examining toxicity in s3xual culture while also trying to be s3xy.”

Badgley also admitted on “Podcrushed” that he doesn’t have an intimacy coordinator for masturbation scenes on “You,” and he finds filming them “harder” than filming intimate scenes with another person.

“You read it. It’s actually kind of funny or it’s creepy but it serves the story,” he said. “And then you discover in front of a crew of people with a camera on your face, knowing that, in all likelihood, millions of people are going to see this, you’re simulating masturbation.”

This is not the first time Badgley has spoken about how he has had a hard time playing Joe.

He told Collider in 2018: “I feel that people are somehow responding to this show in a way that surprises me. I’ve been really repulsed by certain parts of Joe, and it’s weird to play somebody that you actually feel that way about. It’s a challenge.”

“You” is available to stream on Netflix.

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