Bijou Shines Spotlight on Brentwood Studios

JC Adams
CHICAGO — Chicago’s Bijou Theater will aim its Spotlight Series for the month of December on classic gay adult label Brentwood Studios.

Three Brentwood titles helmed by legendary director Matt Sterling will be screened: “Truck Stop” (1983) featuring Gary Boyd and Mike Savage on Monday; “Challenger” (1983) starring Al Parker on Tuesday; and “Marine Furlough” (1982) with Gary Boyd and Mark Stevens next Wednesday.

Bijou’s David Boyer notes Brentwood was the premiere name in gay erotica during the industry’s 1970s heyday. They produced “scores of 8mm loops that guys would watch on their home projectors. Many directors got their break into the gay porn business shooting these 15-20 minute films for Brentwood.”

“It was quite a feat to establish a setting, identify your characters and develop a story that included some hot and heavy sex in that time frame. Especially without the aid of sound or dialogue,” Boyer said.

Brentwood also was notable for its targeted marketing campaigns. “Not everyone had projectors to watch these films or the ability to get their hands on a Brentwood film,” Boyer said. “But the pamphlets traded hands and allowed names and faces to become fantasies of many young men. They helped establish some of our earliest gay porn stars.”

When the home video market blossomed in the early 1980s, Brentwood began stringing together three to four of their loops into full-length features.

Tickets for the entire Spotlight Series are $20. Attendees will receive a reproduction of a vintage Brentwood sales flyer. Additionally, Bijou World will be offering individual Brentwood titles for $19.95 or three for $45.

Owned by Steve Touschin, the Bijou Theater is part of Bijou World, which also houses a retail storefront and sex club at the same location. Bijou Video, also operated by Touschin, is the largest distributor of gay adult videos in the Midwest.

Opened in 1969, at 1349 N. Wells St. in Chicago, Bijou World is the longest-running operation of its kind in the country and is the only large-screen theatre that still shows gay adult movies.

For more information on the Bijou Theater, email David Boyer or call (800) 932-7111.

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