Sex Dolls and Spouses: A Show’s Way to Shoot Love Scenes Without Breaching Social Distancing

Soap operas and other television shows are starting to ramp up after the coronavirus lockdown. However, the new normal is giving them a few obstacles.

The Bold and the Beautiful, a TV show by the Bell- Phillip Television Production, had to think of a way on how they could film the show’s sex scenes amid the social distancing implementations. For this reason, its production experts thought of using a sex doll that they used as a corpse back then.

The said show is the first one to go back to filming after the government began lifting coronavirus-brought lockdowns. According to Bradley Bell, the head writer and executive producer of the show, the greatest challenge in filming is to keep the scenes steamy while keeping the actual casts distanced from each other. 

Sex Dolls and Spouses: A Show’s Way to Shoot Love Scenes Without Breaching Social Distancing

Bell and his production team tried to cut all the show’s kissing scenes. However, the flow of the story was not the same. 

The production staff and crew had to get extra creative so that they could keep up with the show’s awards. Notably, The Bold and the Beautiful won an Emmy award for its 35 million viewer engagement. They also had an ad-revenue stream amounting to $36 million in 2019 and $8 million in the first quarter of 2020. 

In some scenes that need to be intimate, the leading men or ladies will swap with their spouses as they are quarantining with each other anyway. This is the first time that Bell had a kissing double for the shows he produces. 

On the other hand, some scene doubles would be dusted oof, wigged out, and makeup swabbed sex dolls.

This is not the only time that mannequins or sex dolls were used as a replacement for real people in order to not break the social distancing implementations. In a soccer game not too long ago in Korea, sex dolls were used to fill in the stands. Mannequins were also put in restaurants to fill in the empty seats without breaking social distancing. 

However, this time, the show will use the dolls for actual sex.

According to Bell, they have life-like blowup dolls that have been in stock for the past 15 years. They have used those dolls for shooting different scenes such as when actors were presumed dead. His team will be dusting the dolls off, put new wigs, and retouch their makeups, and use them in the show’s love scenes.

Bell added that it will not be unlike performing with a CGI character, with each of the actors solely going through the motions inches away from the camera. Thus, it will look like the actor and the doll are performing nose to nose, in the heat of passion. However, the reality is that they will be shooting the love scenes all by themselves. 

Safety Measures are Done For the Show’s Staff and Crew

The cast and crew for The Bold and the Beautiful underwent several safety measures to ensure that they are not sacrificing their health. Before they were allowed to return to set, each of them was tested for COVID-19. 

In addition, there will be an assigned coordinator who will be responsible for limiting the number of individuals on stage at a time. The areas for props, hair, makeup, crew, as well as production staff, are also properly distanced and has a glass partition. 

Sex Dolls and Spouses: A Show’s Way to Shoot Love Scenes Without Breaching Social Distancing

Bell said the show’s crew has been preparing for the comeback for the past month or even more. The production booth and the whole studio have also been modified to ensure the safety of everyone. They also instituted testing protocols and are now working with Reel Health to get help in navigating the new normal.

Moreover, Bell noted that they feel like they are ready to come back in filming the show. Still, safety is their greatest priority once they finally returned to production. 

Bell Plans to Buy More Dolls

After trying to pose the doll, Bell and his team found out that it was very convincing. So, they will see how the filming w0ith the blowup dolls would work. And if it works well, Bell is planning to buy more male dolls.

Bell also reached out to the spouse and partners of the show’s actors. They asked them if they are willing to be the body doubles in some kissing scenes since they are quarantining together anyway. Some of them are interested in becoming kissing doubles.


The spouses will also be tested for COVID-19 before they can go on to filming. Bell also wants to make sure that the husband and wife are comfortable doing the kissing scenes in front of the camera. The production team will be using a number of camera tricks to make it appear like the real leading man and leading lady are the ones kissing in the scenes. 

The  Bold and the Beautiful last had its filming on March 13. At that time, they were not sure when they can resume the shoot but thought that the lockdown might only last for a few weeks. Bell was in constant communication with the staff, crew, and actors. During virtual meetings, Bell would give a tentative date of the comeback. However, it was constantly moved since the government had not lifted the lockdown during that time yet. 

Sex Dolls and Spouses: A Show’s Way to Shoot Love Scenes Without Breaching Social Distancing

Now, Bell and his team were able to go back to filming. However, they are taking extra precautions to ensure that no one will contract the virus. Bell pointed out that all their crews and actors will be wearing protective masks. The cast can only remove their masks once they will be involved in shooting scenes. They have also revised some parts of the scripts and trimmed down several scenes. Group scenes were removed and most of the scenes will only have a maximum of two actors included.

Bell also said that their current plan to mention the pandemic in the show but not to dive it into the entire story.

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