Amber Heard | Amber Heard, Naturi Naughton, and Leah Renee in The Playboy Club
Credit: Matt Dinerstein/NBC

Despite earlier reports claiming that the stars of The Playboy Club were required to sign nudity clauses, might NBC’s ’60s-era drama about Hugh Hefner’s empire lack the titillation factor some are expecting?

Yesterday, during NBC’s annual presentation to prospective advertisers, star Amber Heard said the finished product may surprise some viewers. “I think because this is character-based — it’s a group of friends who become family within this interesting, rich setting — I think the plot and stars can’t help but take center stage. The racy material, you’ll find, is not all that racy,” she said.

The show, scheduled to air Mondays at 10 p.m. in the fall, centers on the opening of the first Playboy Club in Chicago. Heard says she was inspired to take on the show with a potentially controversial premise especially after researching the subject. “I was surprised by how Hugh, when he was branding this, used its progressive and racy nature to push the envelope and push society forward. He was the first to integrate his workplace, without the mandatory obligation to do so. Things like that, I appreciate. He did what he could to push the envelope, I hope we do the same,” she said, adding the caveat that she doesn’t expect them to take it too far.

“I don’t think it’s that racy,” she repeated. “I really don’t. I think it’s story about the time, the setting, the movement, the people behind it. It’s a story about a group of girls taking over Chicago, and I think that’s what will come through.”

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