LOS ANGELES — Will Hollywood follow in porn’s footsteps and consider mandatory condom use in mainstream films’ sex scenes?
It's almost a non-issue considering that aside from the rare extreme film, the amount of actual sex in a Hollywood establishment production would amount to passionate kissing and the possibility of some physical contact of the genitals.
But yesterday’s decision by the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors to allow the porn-condom ballot measure in tinseltown's back yard sparked the question.
Free Speech Coalition (FSC) executive director Diane Duke and AIDS Healthcare Foundation's (AHF) Michael Weinstein briefly debated the issue in an interview with TheWrap.com.
Actual condom use aside, the more pressing concern comes from porn advocates who maintain that there’s a double standard in Hollywood that proves proponents of the proposed mandatory regulations are unfairly singling them out.
Duke asked, “When's the last time you saw Brad Pitt stop in the middle of a love scene and put on a condom?"
But Weinstein maintained that porn is different from mainstream in that sex is incidental in a Hollywood production, whereas a porn move is “where people are having real sex and getting real diseases."
He does believe however, that Hollywood will jump on the forced condom bandwagon.
Duke disagreed and said performer testing has proven effective and further noted that Hollywood needs to be on guard against any regulatory intrusion.
If the measure’s approved in November Duke said, "This could be the first step down a slippery slope that could significantly impact our mainstream counterparts over the hill in Hollywood."
She also commented on the broader impact of government intervention.
"If local municipalities start regulating permits on social issues, what happens on a number of fronts…animal rights, smoking, drinking, even eating junk food?" Duke asked. "What kind of example do those people eating junk food on TV set for our obese kids?"
But Weinstein said he doesn’t think Hollywood would be affected and stressed the safety concerns of actors.
"We're not against pornography, we're not trying to censor anything," Weinstein said. "We just want to see the same sort of workplace safety standards applied to that workplace as every other."