Actress Helen Hunt had reservations about stripping off in new movie The Sessions as the role required her to flash more flesh than ever before on film.

Hunt has been nominated for an Academy Award for her portrayal of Cheryl Cohen-Greene, a real-life "sex surrogate" who is hired to sleep with a paralysed virgin.

She has previously appeared naked onscreen in 1992's The Waterdance, but she admits audiences see a lot more of her in The Sessions - and the prospect terrified her.

The Oscar winner tells British magazine Radar, "My vagina has never been in a movie (before), if we're going to go there... I certainly was not super-human and without any nerves about feeling exposed or judged for being a naked person.

"But whatever fears I had were smaller than my desire to be in it."

Hunt felt honoured to play Cohen-Greene, who she calls a "rock star" for her work as a clinical sexologist.

She adds, "I called her and said, 'It's Helen Hunt, could we speak?' She said, 'Great, I'm just getting out of the shower, then I have a client and I'll call you in two hours'. I hung up and went, 'Wait a minute, what? She's still doing this?' That told me something... She says she's gone to seminars and people are yelling out, 'W**re!'"