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Steam on the Screen: the Hottest Scenes in Movie History

Aired June 18, 2003 - 20:53   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

ANDERSON COOPER, CNN ANCHOR: All right. Talking sex and movies.
When people talk about their favorite movies, they may talk about the stars, the plot, maybe even the dialogue.

But let's face it. For most of us, a really memorable movie has to have -- well, at least a little sex appeal. "Premiere" magazine has compiled a list of what it calls the hottest sex scenes in history.

At the top of the list, a steamy encounter between David Hemmings and supermodel Veruschka in the 1966 cult classic "Blow Up."

To find out why that scene is No. 1 and to find out the rest of the list, we've asked premier "Premiere" senior editor Glen Kenny to join us.

Glenn, thanks for being with us.

GLENN KENNY, SENIOR EDITOR, "PREMIERE": Thank you for having me.

COOPER: First let's look at the top five you have on this list.

And by the way, "Premiere" really went out on a limb on this issue.

KENNY: Absolutely, yes.

COOPER: Really question about whether it's going to sell well.

KELLY: Who can say whether sex has any kind of appeal in today's marketplace?

COOPER: Exactly.

All right, let's look at top five. "Blow Up," we just mentioned, 1966. "Some Like it Hot," "...God Created Women," "Vixen," 1968 and "Last Tango in Paris."

Why -- these are all relatively old films.

KELLY: Yes, it's kind of disturbing to hear "Blow Up," which came out in 1966, referred to as an old film. That's not even as old as I am. But the thing about "Blow Up," it's not only -- it was -- it's sort of one of the first art films to make that significant dent at the box office, and that's in large part because of its sexual component.

The scene that we cited as one of our top sex scenes of all time is a scene in which no sex scene actually occurs. It's a simulation. It's a photo shoot that becomes incredibly sexual.

But in another scene in the film, a sort of mini-orgy, with the lead actor David Hemmings, and model Jane Birkin and another girl, it's the first instance of full frontal nudity ever in a mainstream...

COOPER: Really? It's interesting to me that...

KELLY: ...studio release.

COOPER: ..that the top five sex scenes, according to your magazine, really are not in these times -- you know, not made modern day, which you would think as sort of, you know, this would be the time when it would be the sexiest because there is so much to show. But I guess it's not showing that's almost sexier in these cases.

KELLY: Well, you know, everybody talks about how the biggest sex organ, or the most important sex organ, is the brain. And also, we're dealing here in an era in certain years, in certain movies that broke taboos, that broke down the barriers that now allow for more explicit sexual content to exist in film.

COOPER: Let's show the last five on your list of the top ten sexiest scenes. No. 6, "Body Heat," 7, "Hunger," 8, "Walkabout," 9, "Mulholland Drive," 10, "Sex and Lucia."

KELLY: Lucia, yes.

COOPER: Now two of these scenes actually are sex between women. Is that correct?

KELLY: That is correct, yes. Boy, oh boy. Well...

COOPER: Answer me that one.

KELLY: The thing we were looking for, aside from just actually really attractive people doing unusual and interesting things, was scenes that actually had a context, scenes that actually had an emotional content.

Now the two lesbian scenes you mentioned occur in the film "The Hunger" and "Mulholland Drive," and though they're both scenes featuring sex with women, the emotional content is very different.

In "The Hunger," it's sort of parisitic, vampiric thing, which is apropos because Catherine Deneuve is playing a vampire seducing Susan Sarandon, whereas in "Mulholland Drive," there's a certain vulnerability that the two characters share and they sort of are going off of a cliff together. So the emotional content of... COOPER: All right. Very briefly, a lot of people would be surprised that "From Here to Eternity" is not on this list, that famous scene on the beach with Burt Lancaster and I think it was Deborah Kerr -- was it?

KELLY: Deborah Kerr, yes. And i's another shattering of taboos here.

COOPER: But not on the list.

KELLY: That's another film that would have gotten us accused of favoring old movies.

I think one reason it's not on the list is just because we wanted to throw a little curve ball and because the scene is very familiar. And although it's a wonderful, it is a bit melodramatic. I never knew it could be like this. And what she's talking about isn't really seen, per se.

COOPER: All right. Glen Kenny, it's a fun article. Appreciate you joining us.

KELLY: Thank you.

COOPER: All right.

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