Cookies help us deliver our Services. By using our Services, you agree to our use of cookies. Learn More.

Dead Ringers' Crew Wanted Its Childbirth Scenes To Look As Real As Possible

The works of David Cronenberg have never been for the faint of heart. With his unique predilection for body horror and a penchant for some uniquely disturbing sex scenes, seeing the writer-director's name on a project is pretty much a surefire sign that the film in question will be extremely NSFW.

Take his 1988 film, "Dead Ringers." The movie follows twin gynecologists who regularly swap identities and sexual partners while pushing the boundaries of medical science. Prime Video's series of the same name follows the same basic premise as Cronenberg's film but adapts it for long-form storytelling and swaps Jeremy Irons out for Rachel Weisz, giving the story a new dynamic altogether.

Though Cronenberg's film is iconic, the new "Dead Ringers" has one clear advantage over its predecessor: the advancement of technology. This helps to explain why medical procedures, like childbirth, are so convincing in the series.

In fact, Weisz told Vanity Fair that a lot of work went into making that particular aspect especially convincing. "There was a photographer that Alice was very inspired by called Heji Shin, and she had done some amazing pictures of babies being born," the performer said. "So, I think we always knew we wanted it to be realistic."

A lot of effort went into making sure all the childbirths looked authentic

Rachel Weisz pointed out that the act of childbirth was pivotal to the story of "Dead Ringers" and especially important to series developer Alice Birch. "In the pilot script that Alice wrote before the whole series was commissioned that we gave to Amazon, it was very clear," Weisz explained. "There's a montage sequence, and there will be closeups of birth. So we always knew that."

Still, that didn't mean that the cast and crew of "Dead Ringers" nailing the look and feel of childbirth was a given. "I didn't know exactly how it was going to look, and there was a huge technical crew with prosthetics and makeup and experts on set," the actor went on. "Obstetricians explaining if I got a movement wrong with pulling a baby out."

While this dedication to getting an element like childbirth right in "Dead Ringers" could be commended for its commitment to accuracy alone, Weisz pointed out that there was another reason why it was so significant. Namely, the stories, themes, and characters are heavily influenced by the procedure.

"It was important that the first episode was very realistic so that you believe in the twins' two different dreams: science and birthing," Weisz said. "Once the big money comes, then it gets really heightened, so you can go on this journey with them, hopefully," the actor concluded.