Maria Schneider and Marlon Brando star in Bernardo Bertolucci's highly controversial drama, Last Tango in Paris.

Considered obscene by some, and the most erotic movie ever made by others, "Last Tango in Paris" is as ridden with controversy today as it was in 1972 when it originally screened. Director Bernardo Bertolucci said he was inspired by the raw art of British painter Francis Bacon to tell the story of a young Parisienne (Maria Schneider) and her sordid affair with an older American man (Marlon Brando). However, Bertolucci has come under fire for some of the practices he used to film the infamous “butter scene,” in which Brando’s character forces himself onto Maria Schneider and uses butter as lubricant. “I’ve been, in a way, horrible to Maria because I didn’t tell her what was going on, because I wanted her reaction as a girl, not as an actress,” the director said in a 2013 interview, which reignited the controversy surrounding the film. Since then, there have been conflicting reports about whether the young actress was misinformed about the entire scene or just the use of butter. In any case, Schneider, who died from cancer in 2011, had been outspoken about being blindsided by the duo in a number of interviews. In 2007 she told The Daily Mail, “I felt humiliated and to be honest, I felt a little raped, both by Marlon and by Bertolucci.” She also added, “I should have called my agent or had my lawyer come to the set because you can’t force someone to do something that isn’t in the script, but at the time, I didn’t know that.”