Despite containing relatively few depictions of sexual behavior, the MPAA gave the movie the R-rating for all the conversations about sex and verbal descriptions of sexual acts. However, according to director Bill Condon, the MPAA members thanked him afterwards, because they had found the movie very educational nevertheless.
On the DVD commentary, Bill Condon reveals that he wanted to include, in a montage, a clip from I Love Lucy (1951), in which a character makes a joking reference to Dr. Alfred Kinsey's research. Condon says that he was unable to use the clip, because Lucie Arnaz (the daughter of Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz) denied him the rights, offering very little explanation, aside from claiming that her parents would never allow themselves to be associated with Kinsey.
Tim Curry admitted that his casting in the film as the conservative Thurman Rice was ironic due to Curry's famous role as the sexually experimenting Dr. Frank N. Furter in The Rocky Horror Picture Show (1975), and it was director Bill Condon's intention to avoid portraying Rice as humorless.
Cole Porter wrote the song "Too Darn Hot" for the Broadway musical "Kiss Me Kate," which premiered in 1948, the same year as the publication of Alfred Kinsey's book "Sexual Behavior in the Human Male". The song contains the lyrics "According to the Kinsey report / Ev'ry average man you know / Much prefers to play his favorite sport / When the temperature is low." The Ella Fitzgerald recording of this song is played on the soundtrack. When MGM produced its movie version, Kiss Me Kate (1953), the same year as the publication of Kinsey's "Sexual Behavior in the Human Female", the film's censors changed the lyrics to "According to the weather report...."
In the penultimate scene of the movie, Dr. Kinsey and his wife are on their way to the airport, and Dr. Kinsey asks her what time their flight leaves. She replies "not for a couple of hours", and he suggests that they stop and go for a walk in the woods, seemingly in no hurry. Although a distant memory since September 11th, 2001, at one point passengers could arrive at the airport within mere minutes of their scheduled departure without any fear of missing their flight.
This is the second movie in which John Lithgow has played a preacher. The first time was in the 1984 Footloose. In both movies he is seen preaching to a congregation about the corrupt values of that period's society.