Combats S.F. Nudity Ban With Public Protest

John Sanford

SAN FRANCISCO — launched its fifth season of the "Golden Gate" series opened Thursday with a public protest against S.F. Supervisor Scott Cox — loosely modeled on real S.F. Supervisor Scott Wiener — during a campaign rally.

Wiener (his real name) pushed through a controversial ban on nudity last year in the historic Castro district, earning him the ire of much of the gay community. And, evidently, NakedSword. 

The company responded by holding its own protest by shooting an all-nude scene in Harvey Milk Plaza, with porn star Dale Cooper playing the ersatz Wiener — and attracting national media attention in the process. Even Wiener himself weighed in on the parody, noting that he was happy they'd at least found someone attractive to play him. 

This is the second time in as many months that a NakedSword production has caused political waves. "I Want Your Love" — a gay independent film that featured explicit sex — was banned by Australian Censors when it attempted to screen at festivals in March. The company subsequently released the movie in its entirety online, and CEO Valenti penned an Op-Ed in the Huffington Post suggesting that gay filmmakers might learn from the history and tactics of gay pornographers. 

"We're not courting controversy," Valenti said. "But we do believe that one of the few independent gay entertainment networks, we should have the freedom to talk frankly about sex. On or off-line."