XCritic Interview: Kendra Lust
"The Power of Lust in an Industry of Hidden Empowerment"
I think few people know the origins of greatness within themselves. As we conclude one month of this in depth look at women who create strength and independence with those they encounter in many forms ans start another, we close and begin with the hardest worker of them all. Kendra Lust is a woman who lives up to her stage name in many ways, truly a walking fantasy that everyone reading this article knows to be a truth beyond words. Kendra is also a woman who was bred in this industry. She put herself through school years ago by indulging in her sexuality and turning her passion into more than a hobby and a job. She created a lifestyle, a brand, a career that she truly lives, eats, sleeps and breathes every day. The leader of the Lust Army does more than you think though. She is woman who has helped talent in ways that far exceed what any fan knows. She creates films that showcase her guys and gals at Society 15 in ways that remind me of the golden era of erotica. As I got this interview, which I have wanted for years, she squeezed me in during her busy schedule, all as she drove to a meeting on her new venture in the business. So fitting for a woman of empowerment. I think fate would have it no other way……
Don Juan: Now, first things first Kendra, I know you are a woman, who like me, you put yourself through school through the beautiful means of the base of this industry. I would love to know, now that you are a director, what was the hardest part of going from being in front of the camera to being behind it?
Kendra Lust: That is such a good question, because I was in all honesty, extremely nervous due to the fact it is a more authoritative role. Which for me, I am a pleaser, I like t just go with the flow. I am not really use to having to express my ideas and having to convey them to other people so that they understand where I am coming from when I give direction and that they fully get what you are asking of them. So, for me, I think just being in charge is the most difficult part of directing. I know what I want. I know what type of scene I want, so feeling that I was in charge was the hardest part for me.
Don Juan: Love it. Kendra, do you want to hear something funny? I have had mutual friends tell me that the way that I remind them of you, is that we are “both such sweethearts.” What they do not know about us, is we are both never pictured as the type of folk that kick people’s asses. I like to tell a lot of people who think along those lines, that just because we always show are sweetness first does not mean we can not whip some ass.
Kendra Lust: Right, absolutely, one hundred percent. My fangs come out when they need to.
Don Juan: Oh, I have seen since day one that you have fire and passion for what you do. It can be seen in the eyes. Every successful woman has that blaze of glory seen in the eyes. Now, here is what I want to tell you. For every single person that has ever told you that you must be angry, that you must become a jerk and an ass bag to be the boss, don’t you believe any of it for one second. I became successful in my other business ventures and other realms of work by being a sweetheart and letting positivity guide my hand.
Kendra Lust: Absolutely and I agree with that. I feel it is not what you say to people, but it is how you say it to get the same message across by communicating it in a way that is just more relaxed and less defending that matters the most when you are trying to do anything with another person. So yes, I absolutely agree. It is the sweet stuff that gets you a lot further in life.
Don Juan: I really commend what you do. I tell you Kendra. I did my first shoot for a magazine four weeks ago. My first coordinated adventure where I put everything together. The hair and make-up, the photography, the studio. It was so hard. It makes me really want to ask you, what do you do to unwind after a frustrating day of shooting.
Kendra Lust: Well, if I am directing, I usually take the crew out and we will go have a cocktail or two. Then depending on who is with my crew for the day, we will do massages, which is kind of nice after a long day shooting. We will eat, drink, massage. That just simply turns any day awesome.
Don Juan: Oh, I have heard of these infamous getaways and I simply say to myself in a little whiny voice. “I want to be on the Lust Army crew!”
Kendra Lust: (We both are sharing a laugh.) It is soooooo great. Yes, I have a wonderful crew. This year, I don’t think we have had the chance. It may sound crazy I have a few projects that I am working on now and I have not even started planning my first movie, so I am like holy shit, it is already the end of January and I need keep things moving so that we can indulge in all that post shot fun.
Don Juan: Well babe, I will tell you this. You have busted your ass and contributed to this business in so many ways. I really mean this and now that we get to talk, you are a woman who has earned the right to take her time and I shit you not, the industry should move at your pace in a lot of ways. I am not telling you that to fill up your head. You have done a lot for this business babe and hope that you always know that. It is appreciated in many different realms.
Kendra Lust: Oh, I appreciate that Don. I don’t know, if I can somehow make a little bit of a difference and connect with some of these girls. It makes me feel good.
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Don Juan: The next question that I had for you, it pertains a bit to the past. With all that you do. With your agency and everything that you do with that. I would love to know, especially in these times we are facing now in the industry. How has the industry helped you to become more of an independent woman? I know you were a woman of strength beforehand, but I would like to know about your thoughts on the industry and how it empowers the women within it? I love telling stories about how the industry helps women.
Kendra Lust. That is such a good question because I feel that I have evolved in so many ways. I feel my evolution as a woman, as a performer, as a business owner, this industry has given me the opportunity to feel empowered. I don’t think a lot of the women understand how much power that they have. I am not a feminist by any means, but I feel that pussy is a powerful thing. Right? We forget a lot of us Don, that we can make the rules and it is just like I said earlier, it is not what you say but how you say it. So, you utilize your assets to make a bigger and longer career for yourself. I feel that our industry is not perfect, just like no industry is perfect. I think with any career, there is always pros and cons. For me, just kind of just seeing how the industry deals with things, there are many views. There is the older ways of viewing things and then there is the millennials, and I feel like I am somewhere in between. So, trying to take a little bit of the knowledge away from the people that have been in the industry a long time and then inside of the new young girls, I think that is one of the reasons that I started the agency, was I wanted women to feel comfortable with a female agent. I know there are a couple others that are out there, I just felt that I could bring something to the table that they couldn’t. I think this is a Midwest thing, where I feel, um, I don’t know, that people will trust me because I am midwestern, or that we are going to do everything ethically, or that we can make a difference with them. I don’t know, I am like a mother hen, but it is something that has helped me to manage people and understanding people’s personalities and not everyone has the same work ethic as you. It is not them, it is a character flaw, I cannot expect to have everybody want the same things that I do. Observing, being involved these past six years, I know what I want and what I don’t want, and I have made a business out of that and branding myself. I am very proud of my agency. That has been the biggest accomplishment for me and something that makes me feel truly empowered.
Don Juan: Truth be told, it’s harder to create that independent brand here in America then it is anywhere else in the world and in the industry. You have so many people who are fighting against you, and you Kendra, you do a pretty damn good job of achieving the success you have sweetheart within that very industry. I really mean this, fuck what anyone else says, you have made a difference, you really have…..
Kendra Lust: Why thank you.
Don Juan: Well sweetheart, the one thing I will say, being a man who holds so many of these amazing women in high regard as friends, I know how much you have given to them and taught them. Truth be told, some of them have even told me that you are like a mother to them and I mean that in a way, ……
Kendra Lust: Oh, I do not take it figuratively, I am old enough to be some of their mothers and I am totally proud of that. I will be thirty-nine in September and I am completely ok with that. I am not trying to be twenty. I just want to look my age and not look any older. So, I get it. It is those moments where I meet an eighteen-year-old girl who wants to do porn, I don’t just say she is hot, she is young, she does not have tattoos, and she is beautiful, so let’s sign her we can make a ton of money. My first instinct and maybe it is wrong, but my first thought is that we need to talk to this girl. We need to talk to her and make sure that she knows that her parents are going to find out and that everyone in her life is going to know. I let her know that if she wants to get a government job, if she wants to get into health care, all these things can negatively impact her future. So, once you do it, you can not take it back. So, I do not let them sign right away. I give them about three days to think about it and then if they want to, we go from there. But I want these girls to make an informed decision. I don’t want them to throw it away. That is a strong word because there are a lot of opportunities, there is a lot of money and this is a means to truly secure your future. But let’s face the facts, not everyone is going to be a star, nor does everybody want to be. Everybody does it for assorted reasons. So, you just really must figure out what is in the girl’s head.
Don Juan: Yes, I agree. Darlin’ you have changed the lives of so many people in this business. You may never know that you did because, well, you said it to a tee. These girls come in and they do not know life lessons yet. Shit, this is in any industry. No one knows the score of their job when they start it at an early age. For you to be one of those women who is their boss to teach them life lessons, bless you darlin’ I mean that.
Kendra Lust: Thank you!
Don Juan: So, I am going to wrap it up with two questions then I promise I will let you go. So, with my last two glorious questions I am going to put you on the spot because I know you can handle it. What do you want your legacy in the business to be? Now, I ask that because I went to a few gals in the business and asked this same question, on and off the record. Those willing to share told me some very bold things. Most had the thought of leaving behind a “porn bible” to understand the business, in order to leave a lasting legacy of wisdom. I would love to know, what would one of the most beautiful souls in the business leave for yours.
Kendra Lust: That is the most amazing question. I do like the idea of this big porno bible that consists of everything. I guess you could call it “Porn 101.” When I leave, I guess, …. Whenever that may be, because I do not know necessarily if I will ever leave, because I want to maintain the agency. I want the agency to grow. I want to be able to help people to grow within the industry. I know that it has only been two years since we have been open, and I know we have had the chance to work with just a small amount of the girls in the industry. I want our agency to be known as, well, maybe we are not the best at one thing and I want the girls to know that they can always trust us, and that we are safe and that we are ethical. I want them to always feel like they can come to us, not just for work, but to do more in their lives. We are not here just to book jobs for them. I guess that is one very important thing that I want to always be known since I will always be in this business. I feel that within this industry, that the girls are just so negative, there is always this competition and I want them to know that I am a supporter. I love women, I appreciate them, I simply love to see people’s success and I wish that we could all be like that. I don’t know, maybe I can just be the miss congeniality of porn. That would be great. Because not only would I be known as a great performer, but I would also be known as a kind and genuine person because that is who I am.
Don Juan: Oh, you rock babe. Trust me, you are more than miss congeniality. You are miss Universe darlin’!
Kendra Lust: Oh my God, you are so sweet. You are just the sweetest, sweetest guy.
Don Juan: Oh darlin’ you are simply something. Truth is the best of things. See this is what is craziest thing within our business. We have the kindest souls that reside within it, but we also have those same souls who do not know the best ways to show their appreciation. It is the weirdest catch twenty-two of this business, it has been that way for as long as I can remember. It has most likely been that way before even you and I were in it. I will tell you this Kendra, now that I am on the editing staff of XCritic, I am looking to do the same thing that you are. To change this business from the core out. That is what I want my media aspect to be, now that I am apart of the team that runs things. I want it to be a place where performers can come together and talk and fans, who actually pay for their shit can actually come and see it and vie-a-versa, because I mean that and that is what the business use to be.
Kendra Lust: Yes, I know. It was so different. I sometimes think that maybe I was born in the wrong era. I don’t know, I feel like I just have some kind of old soul that is inside of me. I feel like I am such a mix. You know Don how things are now, and I do love how things are now as well. Social media, it truly has helped me so much but there is also a part of me that wishes that I would have been one of the first females in the industry to pave the way for the girls.
Don Juan: There are ways that you do Kendra. Believe you me, before this interview, I was talking with Chris the owner and sending him messages about ideas like I always do. The things we are working on with XCritic, they are things that are grand beyond belief. He and I have spoken many, many times about how we need to be that company that is for all performers, not just a few here and there. For that is what is killing this business. I will tell you this darlin’ what you do with your company, it is making a difference, you keep striving because we will always be behind you.
Kendra Lust: Thank you, I really appreciate that. Also, Don, whenever you need anything you be sure to let us know. That is what we are here for in the business just like you said. The gal that you want to keep an eye out for, well she is this tiny little cute thing, her name is Ember Snow. She has really, really impressed me and I think she is definitely going to be up for best new starlet next year. She is just beautiful, professional and has some killer scenes out there. Also, Sarah Banks. So those two, you should be on the lookout for Don. Especially with the way you see these girls for the same thing that I do. I am so proud of all my girls. I think that this is going to be an amazing year for all of them. We are going to be kicking ass!
Don Juan: Oh my, you know, you and I, we think so much alike. This is how alike you and I are. I have gotten to talk with Ember in detail. She has such a passion for this business. Like you said, she simply has the that wow factor and she cares so much about the people that paved the way for others in this business. It is amazing!
Kendra Lust: Oh, how awesome. Yes, she is just amazing, isn’t she?
Don Juan: Ok, this brings me to the last question doll. What do you have upcoming? Tell us all about what the Lust Army is doing what kind of projects do you have going? Tell us about all that good PR. For the last question, the stage is all yours.
Kendra Lust: Yes, well one big project is that I am revamping all my T-Shirts. That is kind of cool and something I am just so passionate about. Later this year, we have some big continuations of some of the movies that we made last year. One of the biggest is going to be the Booty Lust series. I will be working on those movies very hard. I also have a clothing line in the works. I am so excited. I also have been really hitting the drawing board and creating some very fun stuff like my Entice line. We are revamping my supplement and we are really, really going to kick ass with that this year. I am very excited.
Don Juan: I love it sweetheart. You are simply a gem. Is there anything you want to tell your fans in the closing of the article?
Kendra Lust: Yes, I want to just thank them for all their continued support. I love how much they have opened up to all of the new girls in the business. I want the fans to always know, that without them, there would be no us. So, I appreciate it and them so very much.