Gay Industry Awards

Jeremy Spencer
Hot House Entertainment, the San Francisco-based company that faced bankruptcy not five years ago, received the most trophies at this year's 16th Annual Grabby Awards.

Their blockbuster prison tale "Justice," starring Shane Rollins, received five awards, including Best Video at Gay Chicago's annual festivities. An additional trophy went to Black-n-Blue for Best Leather Video.

In addition to Best Video, "Justice" took home top honors, including Best Director for Steven Scarborough, Best Actor for Shane Rollins and Best Sex Scene for Rollins and Trevor Knight's voracious flip-flop scene.

"Justice" pleased fans as well as the Grabby judges, and the film was given Maleflixxx's People's Choice Award, an award voted on by the fans.

Once again, for the ninth year in a row, directrix Chi Chi La Rue and Chicago's Honey West co-hosted the event, with hosting help from performers Johnny Hazzard (a Rascal Video exclusive), Kent North (a Hot House exclusive) and Matthew Rush (a Falcon Studios exclusive). Trophy boys for the event included Raging Stallion exclusive Steve Cruz, Francesco D'Macho, Buckshot exclusive Danny Roddick and Cort Donovan.

D'Macho and Donovan got a jump on their competition that night, both receiving awards: D'Macho, a Hot House exclusive, was awarded with the Most Versatile Performer honor, while Donovan, a Falcon exclusive, tied with Barrett Long for Hottest Cock — an award the ubiquitous Bruce Vilanch bestowed upon them. D'Macho's win put Hot House over the top with seven awards.

Trevor Knight, who received the most performer nominations (with a whopping seven), took home the most performing awards, with three: Best Group Scene (Electro Video's "2nd Inning"), the aforementioned Best Sex Scene with Rollins, and Performer of the Year (an award shared with Raging Stallion's Collin O'Neal taking a second award with co-shooter Dan Fox for Best Videography in "Lebanon"). In addition to Knight, Rollins and O'Neal, Matt Cole received two trophies to line his mantle: Best Bottom and Best Newcomer — another shared award with Buckshot exclusive Brain Hansen.

The runner-up to Hot House was Falcon Studios, which took home six honors.

In addition to Donovan's win, Best Supporting Actor went to co-host Rush for the first and second editions of "The Velvet Mafia." The films also received awards for Best Screenplay, Art Direction and a Non-Sex Performance by the legendary Paul Barresi. Falcon also received Best DVD Extras for "Dripping Wet."

Barresi joined another prestigious list by being added to the 2007 Grabby Hall of Fame. He was joined by performer- turned-directors Gino Colbert and Blue Blake, videographer Max Phillips, agent David Forest and friend-to-the-industry Vilanch. Director La Rue was given a Lifetime Achievement Award for her body of work, not to mention her tireless devotion to the industry.

The awards show, which was held on May 27, opened with a hysterical video starring drag dives LaRue, West and Amy Armstrong (with a special appearance by double award-winner Cole). It took snippets of the Tony- and Academy Award-winning "Dreamgirls," made them dirty, and wowed the crowd. Performers and adult notables came from all over the country to be at the show. In attendance were Men of Odyssey's Bob East, directors Jett Blakk, Ross Cannon, Bruno Riccelli, Chris Ward, JD Slater, Doug Jeffries, Kristofer Weston, performers Damon Phoenix, Ty Hudson, Jake Deckard, Tober Brandt, Brandon Baker, Diesel Washington, Andy Kirra, Blake Riley, Parker Williams, Derrick Hansen, CJ Knight, Jeremy Hall, Lars Svenson, Tony Serrano, Michael Brandon, Chad Hunt, Trey Casteel, Roman Heart, Jan Fischer and many more.

16-Year-Old Grabbys
Gay Chicago's Grabby Awards were founded in 1991 by the late Big Daddy Ferguson and Hank Ferguson, and were yearly honors in the magazine until 1998, when the show went live. Back then, the festivities were held at Manscountry, the famous Chicago bath house. A lot has changed since then.

The awards are still held during Memorial Day weekend, concurrent with the famous International Mr. Leather (IML) contest and trade show — a decision made in order to bring industry greats from both coasts to the Midwest. But the venue has changed. This year, as two years prior, the show was held at the popular concert venue Park West in Lincoln Park.

This was the first awards show since Big Daddy's passing and he, no doubt, was looking down on the show with a beer in one hand, a cigarette in the other, and a bevy of fallen porn stars like Joey Stefano and Matt Gunther at his side.