Each month, industry news media organization XBIZ spotlights the career accomplishments and outstanding contributions of Women in Adult. WIA profiles offer an intimate look at the professional lives of the industry's most influential female executives.
Anna Lee is deservedly WIA’s woman of the month for February 2016.
[VR] takes fantasy and experience to a whole new level and is, in my belief, the “thing” that will revitalize adult content production.
Lee spent most of last month showing off and explaining her company’s efforts in the virtual platform space to thousands at the 2016 XBIZ Show, as well as other industry conventions.
XBIZ World honors Lee with leading the commercial VR charge as we learn more about her in this Q&A interview.
XBIZ: What’s the best part of your job?
Lee: With my educational background being rooted in mainstream film and theater, working on the set gives me the opportunity to merge my love and knowledge of production and entertainment with adult and technology. It’s the perfect marriage of all of my strengths and allows me the ability to use my creative and artistic skills in practical application.
I also get to work with and develop strong relationships with some of the most talented performers, directors and crew that are working today. I am extremely grateful to be able to work with the team that I am a part of. They make it all worthwhile!
XBIZ: How did such a strong, successful woman like yourself carve a path in the adult industry?
Lee: While in university, I was having a conversation with some fellow theater and film students who were lamenting about how they wish they could have a job that would allow them to work whenever they wanted and in a creative fashion.
Realizing that the business of sex was always a sure thing, I started a phone sex and web cam company called Courtesan Entertainment and enlisted some of the actresses from school to work for me as phone sex operators and cam girls. It was important to me that the women who worked for me were treated respectfully, fairly, always felt safe and were highlighted at their best and most beautiful. This is something that I carry with me today in my work on VR film sets.
Courtesan Entertainment not only financed my education, but also led me to a brand new virtual world called RedLightCenter while searching for new and innovative methods to market my company and the women who worked for me. The Courtesan ladies went on to become some of the first virtual working girls in history, which led to the development of the RLC Working Girl Program.
Brian Shuster, the site’s CEO, invited me to work with the RedLightCenter team over 10 years ago after which I sold Courtesan, relocated to Vancouver, B.C., and began to immerse myself in the world of technology and virtual reality in adult.
HoloFilm Productions was a natural progression for me — taking the knowledge learned from running a massively multiuser, adult social network and virtual reality on a virtual world platform and applying it to film production.
XBIZ: Tell me about the excitement over virtual reality as the platform and content are slowly finding consumers?
Lee: VR is the next progression for content; not only for adult, but all forms of entertainment. It breaks that fourth wall and allows the viewer to become immersed, engaged and even become part of the scene. It takes fantasy and experience to a whole new level and is, in my belief, the “thing” that will revitalize adult content production.
Headsets are now available to consumers and as such, the demand for content will increase. 2015 was the year of early adopters of VR content production; 2016 will be the year that you see that segment begin to boom as filming and postproduction techniques become better and more refined and the quality of the content improves exponentially. We are in the early stages of the VR boom and I look forward to see what 2017 holds for innovation and tech in entertainment.
XBIZ: What’s a typical workday like?
Lee: There is no such thing as a typical workday — every day is different. When we are not shooting, my day consists of preproduction and postproduction meetings, paperwork and planning (casting, location, shot lists, etc.) for upcoming and past shoots, as well as overseeing the development of our member site — HoloGirlsVR.com — our brand and our relationships with performers and partners.
On set during shoot days you will find me doing everything from moving furniture to directing scenes. Most importantly however, I keep the shoots on track, which can be tough when we are doing five to six scenes per day over a four-day span. We are a small but passionate crew and believe in all working together to achieve the best result possible with no job too small for any one person on set. I am so fortunate to work with, support and be supported by a team of some of the most amazing, talents and hardworking people in this industry.
XBIZ: In your spare time, what do you like to do?
Lee: With my life so immersed in tech, in my spare time my partner and I love to unplug and head out into nature, either locally or during our travels. We are fortunate to be able to live in a place as beautiful as British Columbia and try to take as much advantage of getting outdoors as possible with our French Bulldog, Louis. With the little spare time I have left from my increasingly busy schedule, film, gaming and occasionally getting involved in mainstream productions, either as an actress or producer/director, round out the rest of my time that is rich with love, adventure and daily doses of laughter.