Las Vegas May Be on Porn Radar

Las Vegas May Be on Porn Radar
Rhett Pardon
LAS VEGAS – A lot of “what ifs” are facing the San Fernando Valley porn industry in light of five adult actors who tested positive for HIV in the last month.

The outbreak – the first in the sex industry since seven cases occurred in 1998 and one in 1999 among heterosexual porn actors – has prompted many companies to stop production.

But the show must go on, and several Las Vegas porn producers believe they know the answer: Move the productions to Sin City.

"I believe some will head in this direction," one producer told the Las Vegas Mercury. "A lot of them come here and shoot part time anyway. There's a talent pool here and it's easy to fly people in."

While some San Fernando Valley porn producers are looking to shoot in Las Vegas until the moratorium is lifted June 8, several Las Vegas-based producers would rather not have competition for resources.

Raymond Pistol, who owns Arrow Productions, received at least two calls last week on questions like: Is it easy to shoot movies there? How's the talent pool? What's the scene like in Vegas?

Pistol said that the calls were from California adult movie industry executives wanting to skirt the voluntary moratorium that went into effect on the multibillion-dollar San Fernando Valley industry.

"They wanted to get a situation report," Pistol said. "They wanted to know about the laws.”

Pistol said that older companies like his are able to help the adult industry’s moratorium intact.

“When [the industry bands together, it] pretty much keeps anyone from shooting anything other than the most amateurish of operations," he said.

Jack Kyser, who leads the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp., told XBiz that if the industry would move to other parts of the nation, it would be only temporary.

“With an industry like porn, which has nearly 200 companies in the area employing 6,000 actors and production jobs, there is a large film infrastructure here,” Kyser said. "You have the equipment and the talent here. It would be hard to shoot the films elsewhere.”

While film companies are adjusting to the moratorium, some are moving on to softcore, solo and fetish shots for the time being.

But with more adult performers having tested positive for HIV in the just the last week, filmmakers could face a new setback: Industry officials are contemplating a 30-day extension of the June 8 moratorium.