Director Adrian Lyne used emotionally manipulative tactics on Kim Basinger during the shooting to elicit the performance he wanted from the actress, which Basinger later criticized harshly. For example, Lyne did not allow Mickey Rourke and Basinger to talk to each other off-set. The two were kept isolated from each other and Lyne would tell Basinger rumors about how Rourke intended to make her like or dislike him so that she would carry that attitude into the scene. Lyne would also offer Rourke performance notes, but Basinger none, in order to unnerve her. In a very unusual and expensive move along these lines, Lyne shot the film sequentially, so that Basinger's actual emotional breakdown over time would be effectively translated to the screen.
In an interview with Premiere magazine, Kim Basinger revealed that she owns "hours" of deleted scenes that MGM "thought were very psychologically damaging to people." The footage has never been made available for public viewing, even in the Director's Cut DVD edition.
When John and Elizabeth are in the department store just before the scene when they're shopping for a bed, an announcement for a "Mr. Jerry Bruckheimer" over the PA system can be heard in the background.
Kim Basinger said she didn't feel like a "real actress" until she made this film. She described the shoot as emotionally draining and admitted that it contributed to marital problems with then-husband Ron Snyder which were eventually patched up.
The male lead character shares similarities with Fifty Shades of Grey. The former is called John Gray and the latter is Christian Grey. Both are wealthy and like to play sexual games to intimidate and manipulate women.
The film was initially supposed to be produced by Tri-Star Pictures. However, the studio dropped the film due to "creative differences" with Adrian Lyne and pressure by Tri-Star's co-owner at the time, Coca-Cola, to tone down some controversial material. As a result, the film was financed independently, and MGM stepped in and released the film.
Kim Basinger earned $508,000 for her work on this film, according to the 1998 book "Kim Basinger: Longer Than Forever" by Ron Snyder, while a July 1985 People magazine article listed her fee as $400,000.
The trivia item below may give away important plot points.
Based on a true story by Elizabeth McNeill. The film stays relatively true to the book except the source material is much more explicit and disturbing. McNeill was basically a sexual prisoner; kept handcuffed to the coffee table most of the time, forbidden to do even the simplest of things for herself, such as brush her own hair or eat, and ended up hospitalized at the end of 9½ weeks. Not the stuff of great box office, so the film played down those parts and kept the eroticism.