Fall TV Preview

Playboy Pilot's Nudity Clause Stirs Controversy

NBC’s The Playboy Club is already perking up the rabbit ears of one watchdog group, long before the pilot might ever see the light of day.

The contract for actors on the series — which is set in 1963 at the Playboy Club in Chicago — includes a clause stipulating that “nudity as defined above and/or simulated sex acts” may be required, Variety reported. Any such nude scenes would not make it into the broadcast version airing on NBC, but could be edited in for international DVD releases or cable syndication.

Variety noted that no such scenes are featured in the pilot itself, which is now wrapping production in Chicago, but the Parents Television Council is already commenting on the very existence of the nudity clause.

PTC president Tim Winter says in a statement that back when the NBC Universal-Comcast merger was being reviewed by Congress, “[We] called on the FCC to ‘force Comcast to stipulate that it absolutely will not use the public airwaves to distribute pornographic material.'”

Now, when “the ink isn’t even dry” on said merger, Winter argues, NBC’s Playboy Club (which is coproduced by 20th Century Fox TV and Imagine TV) is “requiring performers to sign a nudity clause — something virtually unheard of for broadcast TV.”

The PTC already this development season has taken issue with another pilot, namely the title of ABC’s Good Christian Bitches.

The Playboy Club cast includes Amber Heard (Zombieland, pictured above), Jenna Dewan-Tatum (Step Up) and Naturi Naughton (Fame) as newbie Bunnies and Tony winner Laura Benanti (Eli Stone) as a “vet,” while Eddie Cibrian (Invasion) stars as a Club regular/mob “fixer.” David Krumholtz (Numb3rs) costars as the Playboy Club manager, and Wes Ramsey (CSI: Miami) plays a bartender.