ICON

Last night, Mischief & I ordered Chinese and watched Corruption. It was her idea, not mine, so don’t imagine I’m forcing the girl to sit through my oeuvre and tell me how brilliant I am. In fact, I have no idea what she thought. There was a lot of heavy silence, so my guess is she was less than impressed.

I’m not surprised. A few days ago, I showed her – without telling her I was responsible – a Cock Diesel music video I directed as a cross-promotion for ICON, and she hated it. Not knowing it for what it was, not being able to recognize the location or the roof or Kylie or Hillary (largely because we were watching it in Ultra-Shitty-Scope on YouTube) gave her permission to express, and boy did she.

I don’t mind. Her opinion was so heartfelt and honestly delivered, I can’t take it personally. Besides, there’s a lot going on; the age difference, the different cultural references, the fact that she was, to an extent, comparing a video shot for free in 4 hours to a $460,000 Fatboy Slim video (Weapon of Choice directed by Spike Jonze) that was shot over six days, the incredibly bad YouTube encoding, etc.

None of which changes the fact that she hated it, and I’m okay with that. Doesn’t change the fact that I’m proud of it, either. We’re learning that we have very different taste in media. But it was useful to compare her reaction to Corruption and gauge her distaste by all she didn’t say.

I suspect she hated it as well. And that’s okay, too.

The most curious part of the evening was how it brought crashing back into my consciousness something I know, but often forget. A subtle reminder of why it’s so often pointless to put real effort into porn films.

No one takes a critical eye towards a cheesy Brady Bunch parody. But for those who care, no matter how hard we try, no matter how hard we work, we just can’t compete. To the average viewer, movies like Corruption that come close to looking and feeling like “real” movies get compared to those same mainstream films, and that’s a contest we simply cannot win.

Compare my little political drama with its crew of 11 and its 10-day shooting schedule to even a single episode of West Wing, whose catering cost more than my entire budget, and we’re just not going to shine very brightly. Like Icarus (in my new favorite poem), having flown too close to the sun, we come to the end of our triumph. I suppose that’s the very definition of hubris.

But, like a proud parent ignoring his child’s faults, it is so very easy to forget. I don’t take it to heart, but I have to admit, the whole enterprise has made me somewhat melancholy and reflective about the hopelessness of my life’s ambition.

I have a close friend who is in his final weeks of pre-production on a mainstream film. At one time, I was to have a small role in it, essentially playing Helms from Corruption. When that looked untenable I asked if I could at least audition for the part, simply to be seen by a real casting director. I asked for a job on the movie, even as a P.A., just to get back on a real set, just to get the taste for blood, the hunger back in my mouth.

I have essentially offered to work for free. Apparently, I am too tainted by my current career to pursue my vocation even as an avocation. Free, it seems, is too high a price for a broken-down old pornographer to venture back into mainstream.

The great thing about posting a blog only slightly more often than George Bush gets head is that so many things which would take hours to write simply fade into the background.

Here’s a little quickie update on our lives.

• The Blood of Virgins has been bumped back to September (tentatively) to accomodate its bigger scale.

• We’re currently prepping ICON, a big-budget Hillary Scott all-sex movie.

• I’m in a pissing match with another porn director over an upcoming project and I don’t really understand why.

• My interview for Geek magazine finally came out. It’s okay, but the editors cut so much (Rob sent me the full version right after he wrote it) I was a little surprised. I shouldn’t bitch, though… they only gave one more page to Jon Favreau. Still, I wish they’d kept most of what they cut and cut most of what they kept…

• I went to Porn Star Karaoke with K the other night. Thanks to Lexi Lamour and Ethan Cage and Gram and Joanne being there it was actually fun. Had I gotten the urge to sing, I can’t decide if I would have gone with Tom Waits or Bobby Darin.

• We finally have contractors working on the never-ending bathroom (that’s the little know thirdsequel where the Luck Dragon takes a whiz on a giant fire hydrant) and it’s kind of an adventure. Having moved as far away as I feasibly could from my white-trash roots in Apache Junction, Arizona I had almost forgotten what most of the rest of this country is like.

One of the guys working for the contractor is so reminiscent of all the dudes I went to high school with part of me wonders if I’m related. He’s s decent enough guy, I guess, but I really don’t miss these people. Y’see, rednecks are only funny in standup acts. And this ol’ boy is about as red as they come.

Bad cop mustache. Half-mulllet. Weird 80s-era Oakleys. Sings along with George Strait and Eddie Rabbit on the “Yesterday’s Country TODAY!” station they listen to when they work. Used the phrase “tree-huggers” in conversation with no sense of irony. At all.

I know this guy. I was surrounded by him for the first half of my life. Not only does this guy have a three-tree gun rack in his truck window and a sticker of a badly-drawn Saddam Hussein getting a missile with a US Flag up his ass, he would vote for Bush again if he could. He’s never heard that Al Quaeda and Iraq had nothing to do with each other until we blew the country to shit, nor would he care. I guarantee you this guy has, at some point in his life, used the term “camel fuckers” and the word “nuke” in the same sentence.

So I can’t help but wonder what he must think about us, and our home. Downtown L.A. warehouse-turned-loft complete with full dungeon, pictures of naked whores all over the walls, populated by cats — CATS, for Christ’s sake — a shaved-headed freak faggot with earrings and his slut girlfriend.

Someday he’s gonna talk about this job and the words “L.A. Freaks” and “nuke” are gonna get all cozy in the same sentence. I guarantee ya.

…tree huggers… jesus…

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From Twitter

Random Quote

Will: Sharon, the NEA is a loser. Yeah, it accounts for a penny out of our paycheck, but he gets to hit you with it any time he wants. It doesn’t cost money, it costs votes; it costs airtime, column inches. You know why people don’t like liberals? Because they lose. If liberals are so fucking smart, how come they lose so goddamn always?
Sharon: Hey!
Will: [to Lewis] And with a straight face, you’re gonna tell students that America’s so star-spangled awesome, that we’re the only ones in the world who have freedom? Canada has freedom, Japan has freedom, the UK, France, Italy, Germany, Spain, Australia, Belgium has freedom. [laughs] So 207 sovereign states in the world, like a hundred and eighty of them have freedom.
Moderator: Alright–
Will: And yeah, you, sorority girl. Just in case you accidentally wander into a voting booth one day, there’s some things you should know, and one of them is, there’s absolutely no evidence to support the statement that we’re the greatest country in the world. We’re 7th in literacy, 27th in math, 22nd in science, 49th in life expectancy, 178th in infant mortality, 3rd in median household income, number 4 in labor force, and number 4 in exports. We lead the world in only 3 categories: number of incarcerated citizens per capita, number of adults who believe angels are real, and defense spending, where we spend more than the next 26 countries combined. 25 of whom are allies. Now, none of this is the fault of a 20 year old college student. But you, nonetheless, are without a doubt a member of the worst period generation period ever period. So when you ask, “what makes us the greatest country in the world?” I don’t know what the fuck you’re talking about. Yosemite? [Pause] We sure used to be. We stood up for what was right. We fought for moral reasons. We passed laws, struck down laws for moral reasons. We waged wars on poverty, not poor people. We sacrificed, we cared about our neighbors. We put our money where our mouths were. And we never beat our chest. We built great big things, made ungodly technological advances, explored the universe, cured diseases, and we cultivated the world’s greatest artists and the world’s greatest economy. We reached for the stars, acted like men. We aspired to intelligence, we didn’t belittle it, it didn’t make us feel inferior. We didn’t identify ourselves by who we voted for in our last election. And we didn’t… we didn’t scare so easy. We were able to be all these things, and to do all these things, because we were informed. By great men, men who were revered. First step in solving any problem is recognizing there is one. America is not the greatest country in the world anymore. [Pause] Enough?
— WIll McAvoy (Jeff Daniels), The Newsroom