Performer Marcus London Directs 2 Videos for Penthouse

Tod Hunter
LOS ANGELES — Marcus London stepped behind the cameras for the first time to direct two videos for Penthouse in early April.

"Everything went extremely well," London told XBIZ. "We did a feature film called 'Layover' and a vignette piece I called 'Last Letters,' but that may be changed." London wrote the scripts for both productions.

"Layover" is a story about five female flight attendants at a hotel on a layover "and what transpires between themselves and the staff of the hotel, pilots and whoever else," London said .

"Last Letters" comprises five separate scenes dating back to the era of the Spartans and the Romans with a queen writing to her king before her suicide and his death on the battlefield, followed by their meeting in the afterlife. Vignettes also include a letter in a bottle thrown from a ship, a variation on a Justin Timberlake music video, two cheerleaders in a locker room and a scene in a '50s automobile.

"It was different to combine these different kinds of scenarios," London said, "with different timeframes and ages. And two locations was tough. But it worked."

London has been performing for nine years, full-time for the last five, and said he didn't have trouble stepping into the director's role.

"I kind of direct when I'm working in my head. The only difference is now I'm telling others what I want them to do, the shots I'm looking for, the style of scene. For me, it wasn't really that tough. The hardest thing was preparation beforehand. Putting together the cast list — the cast that fit the parts I had — that was tough. And if they happened to be available. That was even tougher."

London also performed in two scenes.

"You can't really direct yourself. Anyone who says they can can't," said London, who shot "everything up to the point of me going into the sex. The rest was up to the cameraman and Devon [Lee], who codirected my scenes from behind the monitor. I knew what I wanted to show the camera, the camera people had to capture it. That wasn't too tough."

Writing the scripts himself made it easier to direct, London said.

"I wouldn't really want to direct other people's scripts because I wouldn't have the vision that they have. Because I wrote the script, I've already shot it in my head. I just have to get the cameraman to grasp the same vision I had when I was writing the script. I didn't go crazy on the first two movies. I have some elaborate scripts. I would have tried to do them, but I'm afraid I would have made a fool of myself.

"I took it easy this time. But from the feedback I've gotten from the crew and the cast, I'm ready to do it again."

The two productions are scheduled for release late this year.

A wrap party celebrating the end of shooting for the videos is scheduled for Friday in Hollywood, Calif.