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Taron Egerton Defends Kingsman: The Golden Circle's Most Controversial Scene

Warning: This post contains spoilers for Kingsman: The Golden Circle

Sequel films generally aim to be bolder, brasher, and more brilliant than their predecessors. But in the case of the Kingsman follow-up, The Golden Circle, it's also a lot more controversial. 

The Golden Circle features a seriously contentious sex-based scene: Eggsy (Taron Egerton) is shown placing a tracking device inside Clara Von Gluckfberg (Poppy Delevingne), the ex-girlfriend of Eggsy's rival and former Kingsman trainee Charlie Hesketh (Edward Holcroft). Eggsy reluctantly seduces Clara and then inserts the tracker into a very private area of her body. It's there that director Matthew Vaughn pushes the moment off the deep end, switching to a graphic computer-generated shot of what's happening inside Clara. 

Speaking with ScreenRant, Egerton defended the sequence, despite being "uncomfortable" filming it. 

"It's what Matthew [Vaughn] does, it's his signature thing. He likes to do something that shocks. In Kick-Ass, it was Chloe Grace Moretz saying the C-word. In Kingsman 1, it was the bum shot of the Swedish princess. And in this one, it's [this] thing," the actor said. "And, you know, it's not to everyone's taste, but it certainly gets people talking. All it is is explicitly showing what Bond alludes to and says in a double entendre kind of way."

But this isn't the first shocking scene included in a Kingsman movie. In 2015's Kingsman: The Secret Service, there was an eyebrow-raising moment in which Princess Tilde (Hanna Alström) offers Gary "Eggsy" Unwin (Egerton) the opportunity to engage in a certain sexual act if he's successful in saving the world. Being the spy-in-training that he is, Eggsy carries out his mission without a hitch, and the film ends with he and the Princess consummating their relationship. 

Back when the original Kingsman was out in theaters, Vaughn told Entertainment Weekly that the origin of the gag was a way to make explicit the things that were only implied in the Bond film series. "If you've noticed, this is my Spinal Tap of trying to find 11 with every scene," Vaughn said. "[The joke] is a celebration of women and the woman being empowered in a weird way in my mind, which will cause a big argument again I'm sure. It's meant to be tongue-in-cheek and crazy."

Egerton spoke about the difference between that "bum shot" in the first Kingsman film—which was a point-of-view shot that didn't actually include him on screen—with this highly graphic one. He also clarified that it isn't his hand included in the footage, but rather Delevingne's husband's. 

"The shot in the first film I was so anxious before we did it and Matthew didn't tell me that I wouldn't actually be in the shot. The way it was described in the script it was like 'I'm going to do what?' But it wasn't me, it was a POV," explained Egerton. In this one, I'm in the shot and I said to Matthew, 'I'm not comfortable doing this.' So it's not my hand—it's Poppy [Delevingne]'s husband's hand. He saved the world."

Director Vaughn explained the Golden Circle scene in a separate interview with Uproxx: "For the first time, I wanted to see a spy with an emotional and moral dilemma of having to do something he really doesn't want to do. Because James Bond would have done that, and probably would have had sex and a cigarette and thought, who's next? Eggsy is different. And I think it's really important to do scenes that do make people feel uncomfortable. That scene plays very differently to people. Some people laugh and cheer. Other people are like, 'Oh my God.' Some people are disgusted about it. But nobody doesn't notice it—and, afterward, they'll talk about it. And that's what I want to do with films. I want people to discuss it afterward. I don't want to make bland movies. I think there are enough movies made by Hollywood committees that bore you to death. I'm there to wake you up, one way or another."

Now that Kingsman: The Golden Circle is officially out, you can decide for yourself if the scene takes things to far. Between now and the time you head to the theater, take a look the other films you won't want to miss this fall