It was always my goal to expand into other genres of porn, because the whole reason I came to porn was to try and create something different. I don't want to sound pretentious, but I came to this with the sensibility of an artist. It was an experiment for me: "what would happen if I made porn movies that had a storyline and real sex scenes rather than this fake looking stuff?" Dan at Girlfriends Films was the first person to give me the freedom to do it, because he was looking to get a bigger profile in the industry and he thought my ideas might work. After my success at Girlfriends, Mile High Media gave me the chance to move into straight films - again, it was an experiment and a risk, because when we started Sweet Sinner, nobody was doing what we were doing back then. I remember how shocked everyone was that we were making movies that way and that they were selling. Then I moved on to a partnership with AEBN specifically because I wanted to shoot gay and TS films, and at the time Mile High wasn't ready to venture into that territory. But as soon as Mile High was ready, we teamed back up and I'm really happy to continue my journey with them.
To create storyline driven movies with a lot of seduction, forbidden themes, and realistic, passionate sex scenes. Same as all my other studios. The only difference is that TransSensual casts beautiful trans performers in lead roles.
I hope it's not going to be that unique as time goes on. Mainstream porn is traditionally pretty bad when it comes to proper representation of different types of people and minorities, but I feel like progress is being made. The queer porn community has done a great job of influencing mainstream porn with their artistry and political integrity, and by creating such great product. I've definitely been influenced by directors like Shine Louise Houston, in terms of sheer artistry. As a mainstream porn director, I get a lot more attention and press than independent filmmakers do, and that gives me the opportunity to bring certain ideas to the forefront and hopefully set new trends. But there are a lot of unsung filmmakers and performers who have been quietly working for a long time to get us to this point, and this studio is in part a tribute to them.
People are slowly starting to realize that there are other ways to be a woman, or a man, and that there are many ways to be a sexual being. People have access to a lot more information now than they used to - all types of online communities and of course, many different types of porn. I was talking to a photographer I work with the other day - he's a cross dresser who's always wished he was a woman, but he settled for being "a lesbian trapped in a man's body." He told me that before the Internet, he thought he was the only man in the world with those feelings. I think we're getting to the point where it's become harder to deny each other's existence. It's getting harder to say "there is only one way to be normal."
How have you been received among the adult transsexual community? There must be so many TS stars who want to work with you.
The trans community has been very welcoming and excited and I've had an opportunity to work with some really great new performers. I love Chelsea Poe, I love Jessy Dubai, I love Aubrey Kate. These women are so inspiring on so many levels, and just plain fun to be around. I'm sure there will be challenges, the people who aren't a fit for us or vice versa, but so far it's been overwhelmingly positive. I'm excited to keep meeting and working with new performers. There are so many girls I still want to meet!
Robert Axel is one of your favorite performers. Why is he so good with the ladies and being so tender in his performances? One cannot fake that stuff up.
Robert is just a really beautiful guy, and a very authentic performer - an artist. He's not caught up in any politics, or hype, he's a lovely human being who is very secure in his sexuality. He truly loves to perform, he loves to "make love," and so he is perfect for us - and of course he's incredibly gorgeous!
You are also a creator and supporter of erotica gay porn. Could you tell us your vision for Icon Male?
The Icon Male brand is storyline driven with real sex scenes, so it's the same vision and approach as with my other studios. My specific goal with Icon Male was to present the gay male as the Classic Everyman. Timeless masculinity, so to speak. But I want to go much deeper with Icon Male than I've gone yet. I want to do some very elaborate period pieces and go much deeper into emotional territory and emotionally-driven sex scenes. I just love telling men's stories, and I really love dressing up the guys, especially in period piece clothes.
I saw some photos on your Twitter page last year of Jessy Dubai with several gay performers. Will she be in a gay film in the future?
We just shot a whole showcase feature starring Jessy! It's called "Jessy Dubai - TS Superstar!" It will be out in June, and it's got a documentary feel in the sense that it has a lot of behind the scenes footage and interviews, but also scripted scenes. The fans really get to know Jessy as a woman, and see her with different types of men -- including the amazing Nick Capra, who did his first TS scene for "Jessy Dubai - TS Superstar." It's a show stopper.
Who are some of the TS performers who you have much acclaim for?
Amy Daly, Chelsea Poe, Sarina Valentina, Aubrey Kate, of course Jessy Dubai... you can expect to see me work with these girls for as long as they'll let me!
Wolf Hudson is one of your favorite performers and friends. He recently returned to gay films in one of your productions. Why is Wolf so good as an actor and performer?
Wolf is great because he's authentic, and fearless, and very self-actualized. His sex scenes are passionate and intensely real 100% of the time. I don't even think he's capable of mediocrity or of "phoning it in" - it's not in his DNA. Industry politics have held him back at times - but in a way they didn't, because those obstacles only inspired him to keep paving his own way. I remember when I met Wolf for the first time, I was so blown away by his originality, and one of the first things I said to him was "You're the future." Wolf has been on the front lines for a long time, and through it all he's conducted himself with grace and artistry. I'm very proud to be his colleague and his friend.
How is your relationship with Mile High since you left them years ago and now have returned?
My relationship with Mile High is fantastic. I left for artistic reasons, because I wanted to do gay and TS films, and Mile High couldn't offer me that opportunity at the time. But as soon as they were ready, I came back. In a way I wish I never left, but at the same time it gave Mile High the opportunity to develop new directors and to let the studios evolve, while I was also trying new things and evolving. That said, I don't plan to ever leave again! As soon as I was back, it was like that feeling of being home again. It's something I can't even describe, and I'd missed it.
Are there any past or future projects or websites that you would like to promote? What are you currently working on film wise?
I'm completely focused on Icon Male and TransSensual, as we have only just begun to explore what's possible with these studios. Right now I'm shooting a TransSensual title that consists of TS women playing out their own personal fantasies, and it will include our first orgy scene! I really love giving the performers a chance to play a role in the creative side, and to choose their costars and help plan the overall scenario. It makes the project a true group effort, and the authenticity goes way up, especially in the sex scenes. I think the key to engaging an audience is to give them something honest and real, so I'm always looking for new ways to do that and to inspire my performers the way they inspire me.
Interview by Apache Warrior