Bernardo Bertolucci, accused of premeditated rape of Maria Schneider with Brando, reacts to controversy
For director Bernardo Bertolucci, the controversy surrounding the famous scene of the butter in Last Tango in Paris is just a big misunderstanding. He gives his version of events.
That’s the controversy stirred Hollywood for some time. In an interview given to the French Cinematheque in 2013, Italian director Bernardo Bertolucci confessed that he and the actor Marlon Brando had the idea of using butter for the famous rape scene in The Last Tango in Paris, released in 1972, but they chose not to tell the actress Maria Schneider, 19 years old at the time.
Having resurfaced recently, his words have created controversy in Hollywood and on social networks. But the director wanted to give his version of events to Vanity Fair: “I would, for the last time, clarify a ridiculous misunderstanding that continues to generate news coverage of The Last Tango in Paris around the world. There are some years, the French Cinematheque, someone asked me details of the famous ‘butter scene’. I said, but maybe I was not clear, that I decided with Marlon Brando not informing Maria that we would use butter. We wanted her spontaneous reaction to this misuse. This is where lies the misunderstanding. Someone thought, and thought that Maria had not been informed of the violence of the scene. It’s wrong ! Maria knew everything because she had read the script, where everything was described. The only novelty was the idea butter. And it is precisely this, as I learned many years later that offended Maria. But not her abuse in the scene, because it was written in the script. ” Indeed, things are clearer way.