If you were anything like me as a kid, you thought that they put a thin, clear piece of plastic between the actor’s lips when they kissed.
After all, how could people perform such an intimate act with a colleague, and on-camera no less!
Do actors on TV really kiss? If so, how? Do the actors fall in love after their on-screen kiss?
Pucker up and get into character!
Let’s explore how our favorite TV stars ready themselves for some on-screen smooching!
Do TV Actors Really Kiss?
Yes, TV actors really kiss.
You heard it here first: actors really do kiss each other.
There’s no thin film of plastic or jump cuts to make them look like they’re kissing. They do, in fact, actually lock lips.
These kisses are consensual, and planned and directed, so all of the involved parties know exactly what to expect.
You may even stumble across interviews with the actors discussing the kiss and what they wanted it to portray.
So, the next time you see an on-screen kiss, you’ll know it’s the real thing.
How Do Actors Kiss on TV?
Actors follow some rules when kissing on TV.
Let’s go over a few things actors consider when performing kissing scenes.
Just like in real life, the first rule when actors kiss is consent.
If the actors and director agree that the actors will kiss a certain way (e.g. closed mouth, open mouth, french kissing), then it’s important they do not break their co-star’s trust.
Most on-screen kisses are open-mouth, but not french kissing.
Actors should also discuss what they are and are not comfortable with. These preferences should then be taken into account by the director and other actors.
Follow the Scene’s Emotions
Actors kissing in scenes is usually meant as a way to enhance character development. So, actors need to reflect on why their characters are kissing.
Do they have hidden motives? Is one of them in love, while the other one is just kissing them to pacify them? Are they long lost lovers?
All of these feelings need to be shown during the kissing scene in order to add emotion to the kiss.
The director may ask them to kiss differently, close or open their eyes, or adjust their body language or facial expression.
Take Care of Their Personal Hygiene
You don’t want to kiss someone with bad breath and neither do actors!
Actors should ensure their breath is minty-fresh before puckering up.
The last thing you want is gossip spreading about you after a less-than-fresh kiss, especially if you’re a famous actor. There’s nothing tabloids love more than humiliating a famous person for a very human and relatable flaw.
Do Married Actors Really Kiss?
Yes, married actors really kiss.
Kissing scenes don’t stop for actors with rings on their fingers.
Married actors still actually kiss their co-stars on-screen.
Actors are professionals trying to make entertaining (or sensual!) content, and committing to someone off-screen doesn’t stop them from doing their job on-screen.
Many actors will have conversations with their partners, ensuring they know about the scene and are okay with it.
As long as they’re only kissing for the scene, and not for personal pleasure backstage, then the actors’ partners have nothing to worry about.
This is something that just comes with the territory of dating or marrying an actor, and most actors’ partners are well-aware of this.
If you’re dating an actor and are concerned about an upcoming kissing scene, try talking to them about what kissing on-screen means to them and voice your concerns. More often than not, they will assure you that it’s completely professional.
How Do Actors Kiss and Not Fall in Love?
Kissing does not always equate to love.
Actors are kissing their co-stars as part of a carefully planned scene, meant to enhance the film’s overall plot.
So, when they kiss each other, it’s part of their job, not out of personal desire.
It’s also important to consider that with harsh lighting and upwards of a hundred people watching you, the kiss may not be very sensual anyway.
Moreover, kissing is just a physical act and doesn’t have to equate to love.
When kissing co-stars is part of your job, it’s easier to separate the physical act of kissing from the emotional bond we often associate with it.
People kiss total strangers, friends, and people they’re very casually dating. That doesn’t mean they’re going to fall in love with them.
How many people have you kissed? Are you in love with them all? If the answer is “no”, then you’re in the majority.
This is not to say that actors who kiss on-screen won’t fall in love, but it’s unlikely to be a result of a quick peck on a movie set.
Can Actors Ask to Not Do Kissing Scenes?
Yes, actors can ask to not partake in kissing scenes.
Actors, like any of us, can always ask to not kiss someone.
However, the director may opt to replace the actor with someone else willing to kiss the co-star.
Unfortunately, this leads many new actors to do kissing scenes they’re not comfortable with for the sake of their career.
However, for more famous and irreplaceable actors, they may hire a body double for the actor. The director would then only shoot the back of the body double’s head and cleverly use angles to disguise that it’s not the original actor.
Otherwise, they can angle the camera away from the kissing pair or fade to another scene. The audience already knows that they’re going to kiss, so they don’t need to see it actually happen on-screen.
Wrapping Things Up
The secret’s out: actors really do kiss each other on film sets! Yes, even the married ones.
However, the smooching is completely professional and there are measures put in place to ensure everyone is comfortable with the situation.
Most of the time, there’s no french kissing involved, unless specifically dictated by the script and director.
Did you know that actors really kiss on-screen? Have you ever kissed someone for a play or movie? How would you feel if your partner kissed someone on-screen?
Let us know in the comments below!
Yesenia Achlim is a technical copywriter and editor with a focus on AV equipment. She aims to break down complicated topics and make technology accessible, no matter your technical expertise. When she’s not teaching you how to replace a projector lamp, you can find her reading and baking.