Poll: Adult Industry Not Sold on 3D Yet, Select Studios Explore Profit Potential

LOS ANGELES — The 3D format may go down in modern history as the first hot technology that was not widely adopted and popularized by the adult entertainment industry, according to the results of a new XBIZ Research poll.

The market for 3D porn is limited, but select producers do stand to profit from these productions, according to the poll. The results are based on opinions of members of XBIZ.net, the adult entertainment industry’s leading social network.

XBIZ asked community members, “How will 3D impact the world of adult entertainment?”

Their responses made it clear that the industry isn’t sold on adopting the technology yet. XBIZ found that 52% of respondents say “there will be limited consumer demand, select producers will profit.” Another 29% say “there will be little to no demand,” and 19% say “it will usher in a new era of great profits for the industry.”

The industry’s lukewarm sentiment about 3D seems to mimic Hollywood, which has experienced mixed success in spite of the big numbers generated by a few 3D blockbusters such as “Avatar” and “Toy Story 3.”

Although all indications show most adult film producers, already challenged by the proliferation of free online content, won't be rushing to adopt 3D technology, a handful of top adult film studios are currently in the midst of exploring its profit potential.

Hustler Video, which received national media coverage last year for “This Ain’t Avatar XXX 3D,” last week announced it has the ability to now shoot exclusively in 3D, and it is planning an entire new slate of parodies of modern-day TV and action films using the technology.

Among the 3D titles forthcoming from Hustler are "This Ain’t Ghostbusters XXX 3D,” "This Ain’t Harry Potter XXX 3D, "This Ain’t X-Men XXX 3D” and "This Ain’t Terminator XXX 3D.”  

Meanwhile, Penthouse Video recently announced it is aggressively moving to 3D productions. The company began shooting all of its films in 3D last August and recently launched what it billed as the first 3D adult channel on Europe’s Astra Network.

In another example of a heavyweight studio investing in the format, parody specialists New Sensations in early 2010 teamed with Funky Monkey Media, which produces only 3D movies, for a parody of the James Bond classic “Octopussy.” New Sensations/Funky Monkey followed it with “Pornstar Fantasies” and “Killer Kurves” in the fall.

Whether 3D proves to be a new profit gateway for the industry over the long term remains to be seen. But one thing is sure: until there’s a strong demand for 3D porn, most of adult entertainment will remain flat for the foreseeable future.