Since I have been working in the adult film industry there are about a handful of people who I really respect and truly admire. One of those is Belladonna and the other is Tristan Taormino.
Lately though I am throwing another girl into the mix and that would be Joanna Angel.
Years ago I got to interview Joanna about three months after she launched her Burning Angel website. This was before I got into porn writing and before she made it big in the porn industry. The interview was for the indie music magazine I publish called Innocent Words (Shameless plug) www.innocentwords.com.
Unfortunately I don't have the interview on my site because when I switched webmasters and host companies the early work of Innocent Words was lost. But the interview was good times and although at the time I thought she had a gold mine with Burningangel.com I didn't have any idea she would parlay her "punk website" into a porn career which includes starring in front of the camera, owning her own film company, a new book, signings, directing, writing advice columns among other things.
Maybe I am bias because I have watched her career blossom into an amazing and hectic adventure over the years. But when I got a chance to interview her years later for my porn site IWAdult (another shameless plug) www.iwadult.com Joanna was still the Joanna I interviewed from years before. She was totally down to earth, funny and intellectual, just like she was before. She hadn't let the fame or porn life go to her head like many many other porn girls.
I wouldn't say me and Joanna are best pals like we go out and hangout at the Gas N' Sip on Saturday nights (That was a Say Anything movie reference for those who don't know,) so she isn't asking me to write this or paying me or whatever some other companies do with writers. I am just writing this because I am really happy for her and I probably sound like a fucking fan boi but who cares. She is doing her own thing, being diverse and not following the porn gonzo trend.
A lot of the porn fan base is still the older generation who do not like tattoos or piercings on girls, so this cuts down on Burning Angel's market. But she is doing something right because you can't surf the porn side of the internet without stumbling upon Joanna Angel or Burning Angel in some capacity.
I could be wrong, but I think it is a new era for the porn industry and I think Belladonna, Joanna Angel and Tristan Taormino are leading the charge and kudos to them for doing so.