Sharon Stone claims she was tricked into removing her underwear for the iconic Basic Instinct film scene

The actress has recalled the raunchy scene in her new memoir The Beauty of Living Twice

Actress Sharon Stone attends the 28th Annual Elton John AIDS Foundation Academy Awards Viewing Party on February 9, 2020 in West hollywood, california
(Image credit: MICHAEL TRAN / Contributor Getty)

Sharon Stone has claimed she was tricked into removing her underwear for the iconic 'leg cross' - a standout film scene in 1992 movie Basic Instinct.

The actress, now aged 63, explains how she was tricked into getting rid of her undergarments ahead of filming her saucy scenes and made the claims about her breakout role in her new memoir The Beauty of Living Twice.

In extractions from the book, obtained by Vanity Fair, Sharon discusses some of the upsetting experiences she's faced throughout her career - one of which was how she ended up removing her panties for one scene in Basic Instinct. The film follows the life of a beautiful crime novelist, Catherine Tramell, played by Sharon, as she becomes a suspect in the investigation of the brutal death of a rock star.

Speaking about the first time she watched back the final finish of the movie "with a room full of agents and lawyers, most of whom had nothing to do with the project." Sharon claims she was previously told they 'couldn't see' her vagina.

"Basic Instinct" 1992 TriStar Sharon Stone

(Image credit: PictureLux / The Hollywood Archive / Alamy Stock Photo)

"That was how I saw my vagina-shot for the first time, long after I'd been told, 'We can't see anything—I just need you to remove your panties, as the white is reflecting the light, so we know you have panties on,' " Sharon wrote. 

"Yes, there have been many points of view on this topic, but since I'm the one with the vagina, in question, let me say: The other points of view are bulls**t … It was me and my parts up there."

After the viewing, Sharon said she slapped director "Paul [Verhoeven] across the face, left, went to my car, and called my lawyer, Marty Singer."

And while her lawyer advised her that the movie could not be made, according to the Screen Actors Guild. "It wasn't legal to shoot up my dress in this fashion," she learned. Sharon still agreed to keep the clip in the film. 

She explained why by writing, "I let Paul know of the options Marty had laid out for me. Of course, he vehemently denied that I had any choices at all. I was just an actress, just a woman; what choices could I have?" she recalled. 

"But I did have choices. So I thought and thought and I chose to allow this scene in the film. Why? Because it was correct for the film and for the character; and because, after all, I did it."

The Casino star said she felt the need "to become objective" as to why she was tricked into removing her underwear, considering she worked so hard to get the part and "only this director had stood up for me."

A representative for Paul Verhoeven did not immediately respond to PEOPLE's request to comment.

But in 2018 Paul told ICON, that Sharon knew what to expect from the scene directions on set. He explained, “Any actress knows what she’s going to see if you ask her to take off her underwear and point there with the camera.”

Filming the movie had other effects on Sharon, who described the role as "by far the most stretching" that she has ever done in terms of considering "the dark side of myself". She added, "It was terrifying. I had walked in my sleep three times during production, twice waking fully dressed in my car in my garage. I had hideous nightmares."

She continued, 'Do you have any idea how many people have watched Basic Instinct in the last 20-something years? Think about it. It's about more than just a peek up my skirt, people.'

Selina Maycock
Selina Maycock

Selina is a Senior Entertainment Writer with more than 14 years of experience in newspapers and magazines. She currently looks after all things Entertainment for GoodtoKnow, Woman&Home and My Imperfect Life.

Before joining Future Publishing, Selina graduated from the University of Sheffield in 2006 with a degree in Journalism. She is fully NCTJ and NCE qualified and has 100wpm shorthand. Having spent the start of her career working on local newspapers and online, Selina spent six years as Acting News Editor and Entertainment Reporter at the Scunthorpe Telegraph where she dug into hard news stories, conducted interviews, covered court reporting, features, and entertainment, whilst going to gigs in her spare time.

Whilst at the paper she was awarded an O2 Media Judges' Special Award for helping a terminally ill cancer sufferer realise his dying wish and marry his childhood sweetheart through a successful newspaper campaign. Things like this are close to her heart when it comes to using journalism to make a positive difference in people's lives.

Selina later branched further into all things celebrity to became a Showbiz Writer at Heat magazine, covering red carpet events, showbiz parties, and various launches before going freelance for two years. One of her biggest celebrity achievements - aside from generating celebrity exclusives - was interviewing Take That (including Robbie Williams) and bumping into Simon Cowell so much at events she told him 'I'm calling you my showbiz dad!'

In 2017 she joined TI Media as a senior reporter on Woman, Woman's Own, Woman&Home, Woman's Weekly celebrity desk before branching online in 2020 when Future gave her the opportunity to focus on digital-first.

When she's not interviewing celebrities you can find her exploring new countryside walking routes, catching up with friends over good food, or making memories.