The Secret and Sad Lives of Adult Film Stars

I’ve been on a roll lately watching documentaries about the adult video business. It’s surprisingly easy to shoot these docs, because all they consist of is interspersing 8-10 interviews with people in the business, and throwing in some scenes of them hard at work to make it more interesting.

The film ‘Secrets of the Adult Stars’ focused on several producers, as well as male and female porn stars. Each one was never shot in more than one setting, talking about their role in this lucrative business–some while outside smoking a butt, another sitting in a dressing room, another behind a desk.

I learned that men earn less than one third of what women porn stars make. And that men are made to feel more like objects than women, since they call themselves ‘human dildos’ and their only job is to get hard and stay that way until the director yells ‘cut’ or whatever he says when he wants the men to climax. Imagine trying to do it with a crew of 10 bored men looking on. One director said he can’t imagine how these guys are able to manage any sex at all.

It’s not a business that most of the men in the biz find easy or satisfying. “You’ve only got so many orgasms in you,” said one director. “You’ve got to choose how many you’re willing to do on film, and that makes your regular sex life difficult to keep up.” In the film, two of the married subjects are later divorced.

The other reason the business is so tilted in favor of women is that they have so many more ways to monetize their adult stardom…like fan clubs, dancing nude in clubs, and chatting on webcams. Men miss out on all of this revenue. Only about 3 in 100 men can control their equipment well enough to do it on film, so despite how hard it is to find them, many, many bail out after just one or two attempted sex scenes.