opinion

Dot XXX -- The Movie!

Colin Rowntree
I had the pleasure to participate in a satire film project written by adult entertainment industry writer and pundit, Darklady recently which has culminated in a short film about the Dot-XXX story from an adult industry perspective.

Using the tried and true Saturday Night Live format for satire, the film is a truly collaborative effort, with cameo appearances by Larry Flynt, John Stagliano, Joanna Angel, Q Boyer, Allison Vivas, Peter Acworth of Kink, Ron Cadwell of CCBill, Mitch Farber of NETbilling and a cast of other adult entertainment luminaries, all of whom contributed their time, creativity and film crews to lend their voice about this issue.

Take a look at it on YouTube before you read on to give you some context.

You can also see it on Darklady's Dot-XXX News, Info and Op-Ed site,
DotXXXopposition.com

A full media story may also be found on XBiz at
DotXXXOpposition Launches With '.XXX — The Movie

With additional mainstream coverage at The Huffington Post


In the interest of posterity, here is the "raw version" of a recent interview I did on the topic with XBiz journalist, Rhett Pardon (he had the skill to shorten my answers for the final print version per my request to make them fit within the capacity of the human lung speaking a sentence. Yes, I tend to go on and on...):

Q. How long did the production take?
A. From the time that Darklady sent me the script to see if I could put it all together until final cut, ".XXX - The Movie" took about 3 weeks of production. (not bad for an eight-minute film going for mainstream film standards.) The shooting of the main actor was smooth and only took seven hours for three minutes of coverage. He was a real pro, with such major credits as "supportive husband" in a Vagasil national ad campaign under his belt. He was fantastic to shoot with in all respects and really is the anchor of the film (even without Vagasil motivation).

The majority of the time spent was in collecting all of the cameo video appearances which was a very fun and interactive process involving a lot of leaders in the industry that I really respect and enjoy the company of. The result is many fond memories. Such as Michael Klein sending a confused (and probably grumpy) Hustler film crew across the valley to film Larry Flynt on eight hours notice; John Stagliano standing in an elevator lobby in Detroit with a guy with a flip cam doing seven takes to "get it right"; Joanna Angel doing five takes for her contribution, each one with less and less clothing (she wanted to show her range!); Ron Cadwell. Mitch Farber and Farley Cahen shooting their comments with their iPhones in portrait mode and me trying to convince them they really could hold their phones sideways when shooting video; and the PinkVisual crew pulling out all the stops and shooting Allison and Q on greenscreen - just because they could. These are the "over the phone" director-talking-to-actor moments I will always hold dear to my heart.

The person that donated the editing time and special effects probably had the biggest job in combining everything from HD to iPhone footage, creating the Fx, Ken Burns Effect montages, greenscreen shots, and all the rest of it. But, a good time was had by all in this, a true collaborative effort where no one really did a lot more than anyone else to bring it to fruition (well, except the editor). As for "directing" it, I'm not sure that's the word for it. It was more like being a taxi dispatcher. As for who produced it - well, kind of everyone involved. Nobody spent a dime on this and everyone pitched in. More like a bunch of hippies living in a yurt in a 1960's worker's collective than any sort of modern production that someone "owns". That's kind of cool in my opinion. Power To The People! (oh. I am dating myself here now, and this is just calling out for a Bob Dillon sing-along right now...)

Q. Do you think movement by the adult biz can topple the plan to implement .xxx?
A. I guess that really depends on how much "movement" there is. If those in the industry that are against it speak up in the form of just simple things - emails and letters to ICANN during the upcoming public comment period, there is a good chance that it will either be further delayed for more years of languishing and finally die a quiet death. Or, it will be shot down if the "sponsoring community" (us) make it clear we do not support it. But, if folks that are against it don't speak up, ICANN can't read their minds and the chances of .XXX becoming a reality increase significantly. If that happens, it will be a rude awaking to all, mostly in the form of spending a lot of money for no particular gain, but just to protect what is already owned.

Q. What's been the reaction to the movie so far?
A. Thus far, reaction has been very positive from both people in the industry and mainstream media that have seen it. The producers of the Colbert Report asked for a DVD last week when they heard the buzz about it. As have other mainstream news outlets that have been following the Dot-XXX story over the past eight years (yes, Darklady is very good at RSS, Facebook, Twitter and such other modern things that the media read). This makes me smile that they even noticed our little satire film produced by the red-headed stepchildren of modern media (i.e. "adult").


And, Rhett didn't ask these final questions, but everyone else does, so here they are:

Q. Why did you make this movie? Don't you have better things to do with your time?
A. Although I too am a busy, busy man: the main reason I participated in making this film was that I saw the eight years of verbal and written debate about the issue had very much become redundant and a lot of people in the industry were just glazed over from hearing about it for so long. Satire and parody have a great way of re-invigorating people and getting them to take a fresh look at important topics. Saturday Night Live is a great example of this and very much the model that this film followed. My other lure for directing the film was that Stuart Lawley presents such an interesting subject for satire. Jon Stewart and Bill Maher had an endless stockpile of material during the eight years of the Bush administration, as so with .XXX - Stuart providing a very rich and colorful source for observation, comment and satire.

Q. What do you hope to accomplish out of all of this?
For people to speak their minds. I am weary of people being glazed over or occluded on this issue and just want folks in this industry to speak up, on one side or the other.


Satire is a tool used throughout all of human civilization to show the "Emperor's New Clothes"

I'm happy to contribute to the tradition of creating satire when someone or something calls out for it by their actions, deeds, words and attitude towards others.

And I am also happy that Darklady gave me a script that had all of the right elements.

Hope you enjoyed the show...

Pish Posh!

Colin

Full Video, Op-Ed and Media Coverage on the dot-XXX sTLD may be found on DarkLady's site at DotXXXopposition.com

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