How Wicked Stars Stormy Daniels and jessica drake Got Their Start

I had the pleasure this past summer of chatting with Wicked Pictures stars jessica drake and Stormy Daniels to highlight the 40th anniversary of the release of iconic movie Deep Throat.  I asked them both to tell me about the moment they each decided the adult industry was the career path they wanted to take.  Here’s what they told me.

jessica drake:

There were a couple of moments that led to my decision.  I host a radio show called In Bed With Jessica Drake on Sirius. I was telling a story to my in-studio guest, Julianne, about how something that she did many, many years ago changed my life.  She was touring with Janine and they were doing a duo act called Blondage.  When I was 18, 19 years old, I was in El Paso going to college for the very first time, and I was stripping. I saw them come through at a club a few a few years after I had moved there, and I remember sitting at the tip rail and watching them, and just being completely fascinated by their dynamics, their power, their beauty…everything.  And, I had stars in my eyes… “I want to do this.”

 There was just not a lot to watch back then so that opened up my eyes to going from being a house dancer and being on stage.  I’m sort of comfortable with nudity.  I’m very much a people person so I just loved to hang out and talk to everybody, and just have a great time. I had plenty of regular customers and then when I saw them it sort of made me realize that it could be more of a career or more theatrical than I had made it so far. 

Stormy Daniels:   “I was always a fan [of porn].  I was never taught that nudity or sexual expression was bad or wrong.  So, I was blessed in that, especially being from Louisiana, I never grew up feeling repressed sexually, or that I should hide my body or that I shouldn’t say what I like, or that masturbating was bad.  Being raised open-minded led to me eventually watching adult movies and enjoying them. I was especially drawn to Wicked movies. 

 I had a friend who was going out to LA to make her first movie and she just invited me along for the ride.  She wasn’t afraid to do porn, basically I think she was afraid of going to California by herself!  I went with her to the first day and she was working on a film and they asked me if I wanted to be an extra, and it was just so amazing.  It wiped away any of the lingering preconceived notions that I had of the adult industry. And that first day on set just being a non-sex background actor, I was like, “This is nothing like I thought.”  And, that was what sort of was the final thought: I could really do this and enjoy doing it and believe in doing it and show other people, especially couples and women, that sexuality isn’t bad and that enjoying sex and pornography if  you so chose, is not something to be ashamed of.  And, so yeah, the shortened version of the story is five days later she got on a plane to go home and I signed a contract with Wicked. 

Not only did both jessica and Stormy end up writing and directing for Wicked Pictures, but each of them have successful empires, love their fans, and continue to stay on the current trending edge of this industry.  Follow jessica and Stormy on Twitter @thejessicadrake and @StormyDaniels. Also check out Stormy’s website and Jessica’s website.

Interview with AIP Daily

Hello Kristin; for those who might not know you please let us know you are and please describe yourself?

I’m an author, a contributor to The Daily Beast and a marketing professional in the Washington, DC area. I love college football and on Saturdays you’ll find me watching ESPN College GameDay and cheering on my alma mater the Florida State University Seminoles. I am finishing my memoir, The Pornographer’s Daughter, about my family’s experience when my father, Anthony Battista, was prosecuted by the federal government on obscenity charges for distributing the movie Deep Throat in the 1970s.

Read the full interview.

On the Porn Film’s 40th Anniversary, a Thank-You to ‘Deep Throat’

It was more than 15 years ago but I still remember feeling the heat of the asphalt under my sandals as I walked across the parking lot to my father’s Florida porn shop, The Premier. I had heard about this place my entire life, yet I had never visited until that day. I was a 25-year-old social worker living in New York City. My life was far from anything associated with the porn industry, but I was eager to get a glimpse of this side of my father’s life.

He had never planned on being a pornographer, but while working as a stockbroker in Philadelphia in the 1970s, he distributed Deep Throat and invested in adult businesses. In 1974, he was indicted by the federal government on obscenity charges for distributing Deep Throat. His career as a stockbroker abruptly ended and his full-time job as a pornographer began. As a child, I remember my father’s federal prosecution in the case and the tumultuous transition to his new career. There were long absences while he stood trial in Memphis, Tenn., alongside porn star Harry Reems and producers and distributors of the film in 1976, and then again in 1978. I saw him on TV when neighborhood residents picketed his Philadelphia strip club, The Golden 33. Deep Throat affected my life in a direct and personal way, but it’s worth remembering how the film changed our culture and the lives of women, 40 years after its premiere in New York’s Times Square.

Read the full article

Rick Santorum’s War on Pornography Stirs Up the Same Tired Arguments

Rick Santorum’s crusade to save America from the pandemic of pornography may seem like an out-of-the-blue call to action against smut—the kind of campaign rhetoric that supplies comedians and late-night talk-show hosts with good material—but for the last 40 years my family has lived this culture war. In the 1970s my father was prosecuted by the federal government for distributing Deep Throat, and today owns adult erotic retail stores. Read my full article.

Retro Birth Control Debate

All this retro 70s style debate about access to birth control is like stepping back in time. Didn’t we already decide 40 years ago women should freely determine their reproductive fate? Everyone’s entitled to their opinion but it’s archaic for Republican presidential hopeful Rick Santorum to believe birth control is harmful for women. Even more insulting is his PAC donor, Foster Friess, eluding to that “back in the day” philosophy that an aspirin in between a woman’s knees is a cost effective form of contraception. Rush Limbaugh became the star creep when he called Georgetown Law student, Sandra Fluke, a slut for speaking out about birth control coverage provided by religious institutions at a Congressional hearing.

My book topic often leads my writing group to discuss sex and women’s issues. And in the context of today’s conversation about contraception, I wanted to share a comment made by a fellow member some time ago before all this recent news coverage. She said, “I’d rather have little girls looking like teens and learning about sex too early than teenagers looking like good little girls and being clueless about sex.” Although we don’t want to see our daughters and granddaughters grow-up too soon, we know from past history that an atmosphere of moral judgment and silence about sexuality leaves women easily ostracized for premarital sex or pregnancy. As you know these comments by Limbaugh and others are reflective of an attempt to ostracize women and marginalize an important women’s health issue.

Recent events illustrate that some attitudes haven’t changed much since the 1970s and that people still believe a widely held misconception that women who have sex outside of marriage are sluts or whores without morals. This attack is a common tactic used to degrade women and harm their credibility in an effort to demean their message.  But today women hold more power, money and influence to fight back and will never be quiet on issues that affect our freedoms and rights.  This upcoming election, watch as women vote overwhelming Democratic and Republicans spend the months leading up to November faltering under the weight of their bad press.  While the aforementioned men seem to pine for the good old days, we will remind them (yet again) that the days of chastity belts are long gone. 

I also want to acknowledge how porn has been influential in spurring conversations and debates about sex and women’s sexuality. When porn became widely available in neighborhood movie theaters and Deep Throat arrived on the scene in 1972, it created awareness about equal sexual pleasure and increased the demand for birth control which was becoming more widely used at the time.  I don’t think women would have won as many hard fought battles for reproductive freedoms and taken such an active role in controlling when they have children, if it had not been for the influence of porn that shaped our opinions about sex at a critical time.

Today sex and porn are still popular and a part of our culture so we should talk about these issues without reverting back to some dangerous views that will limit choices for women. Let’s hope religious organizations will take a broader view about providing contraception coverage and realize a person can freely practice their religion but their religious convictions shouldn’t be forced on to anyone else.

Porn has a place in our society —at least that is what I think. I would like to hear from you on his topic so please answer this quick poll on my blog. It will only take a minute.  Thanks!

Recent Debate Over Contraception Comes as GOP Loses Gains Among Women

Contraception Debate Drowns Out Budget Talk

Rush Limbaugh: Sandra Fluke, Woman Denied Right To Speak At Contraception Hearing, A ‘Slut’

Rush Limbaugh On Sandra Fluke, Obama Call: Having ‘So Much Sex’; Parents Should Be ‘Embarrassed’

Virginia Senate passes bill requiring noninvasive ultrasound exams for women seeking abortions

Va. Senator to Kill Amended Bill on Pre-Abortion Ultrasounds

Did Obama Administration Pick a Fight on Birth Control Deliberately?

House Democrats Hold Birth Control Hearing WithThemselves

Santorum’s Top Super PAC Donor Suggests Women Should Use Aspirin For Contraception

Rick Santorum Declared Contraception ‘Harmful to Women’ in 2006

Happy Father’s Day to the Pornographer

Dad and I at the Inaugural Ball for Bill Clinton 1996

I know my life is too busy when I just realized today is Father’s Day. There was no card in the mail for my dad, so feeling very guilty, I sat down and wrote this blog.  As you may know, I’m writing my book, The Pornographer’s Daughter, in large part because of my dad’s incredible story about distributing Deep Throat in the 1970s.  But apart from his 35 year career in the porn industry, he’s just my dad. I learned a lot from him about persistence (he fought his case to the Supreme Court) and about social justice (which prompted me to earn a Masters degree in Social Work). And a million other little things that positively shape my political views, work ethic and parenting philosophies. So for this, I thank him today.

I also wanted to give you a glimpse of the eccentricities and qualities about him, besides his job, which make him so unique to me. Like how he thinks going to the grocery store is an exciting outing and that he has a strange concern about whether or not I have enough plastic containers for leftovers. He makes great pancakes and gravy and meatballs.  Every election he drives people to the polls to vote who can’t get there themselves. Of course he only gives rides to Democrats since he says he wouldn’t want the Republicans to have any advantage. He lives in Florida so every vote counts. On Election Day in 2008, he volunteered for the Obama campaign office in Philadelphia. Like so many others, when the results came in declaring Obama would be the next president, he gleefully took to the streets like a teenager to celebrate. 

My dad has to wear shirts with a front pocket so he can carry a pen. I have no idea what he might desperately need to write down, but any shirt given as a gift without a pocket is promptly returned.  He hates the bright sunlight, but as previously mentioned, strangely he lives in Florida. He loves big cities, Broadway plays, and he thinks becoming a grandfather is his greatest achievement. He loves his Gracie girl! He is generous to a fault sometimes, and takes great joy in gathering his friends and family together by planning a huge reunion party in South Philly every year.  My dad is a hard worker, yells at the TV when he is watching political shows and reads stacks of newspapers every day. I’m so proud to call him my dad. Happy Father’s Day!

Stockbroker to Pornbroker

The first time I read the Stockbroker to Pornbroker article was when I was home for spring break during my freshmen year of college. I was curious about the stories I had heard growing up and dug through a stack of news clips my mother had collected about my dad from the 1970s.  It was strange to read about my father depicted as the Philadelphia stockbroker turned notorious pornbroker at the helm of a successful strip club and the target of a federal indictment.  To me, he was just my dad.

This article was published in May of 1977 in the Sunday magazine insert for the Philadelphia Inquirer and the impetus to write my memoir, Daughter of Pornography. When I began writing the whereabouts of this article had been lost in between my father’s second and third marriages. I needed to find it again.

My last resort was to research microfilm at the Library of Congress. I was lucky I lived nearby so trips there were easy.  If you have ever researched through microfilm you have to look through everything chronologically, so exact dates are important. There is no database to type in keywords to narrow your search. I relied on my parents’ memories to narrow down the publication date which was frustrating and provided conflicting information.

“Was the weather warm or cold outside when you read the article?” I asked my mother trying to isolate the month of publication.

She said, “I think I was wearing a sweater. Yeah it might have been chilly.” This made me happy and indicated publication was either early spring or fall.

I asked my father yet again, “Are you sure you were interviewed in 1976?”

His response, “It was either spring of 1976 or 1977. I don’t remember Kristin it was more than 30 years ago.” This answer led me back to the microfilm drawer to pull a different year or month. 

I wondered how they could forget what I saw as a major development in their lives. But then I realized the significance of the article was only my perception and this was one of many things that occurred during this time.

I went through every Sunday edition of the Philadelphia Inquirer from the beginning of 1976 through spring of 1977. Finally one Saturday huddled behind a microfilm reading machine with my eyes growing tired and my sweater no longer keeping me warm in the over air-conditioned periodical reading room, the elusive article floated up on the screen.  At that moment I was whispering more questions to my mother on my cell phone when I hastily said I had to call her back.

Click here to view the article.

The cover had a picture of the woman executive with her feet up on a desk and the headline, “Problems for the Female Executive”. It was so cliché 1970s feminism.  I was sure that same woman executive would be the first to malign the Golden 33, my father’s strip club, as the bastion of everything machismo and disrespectful to women.   The article had some great lines. My favorite was a quote in an inset, “the big difference between selling stock and selling smut, according to Tony Battista, is the hours. Also, he doesn’t wear a tie anymore.”

There was also a mention of me and my mother,” I never seem to get enough time with my family,“ my father said. The reporter references his young daughter and wife in Upper Darby.  There is a clear hesitation from my father to expand on that topic. I know why. He always wanted to protect us and being away from home was his greatest disappointment.  

This article has provided me great insight about these events and most importantly a rare glimpse of a younger version my father during this tumultuous time.  It’s a gift to learn about my family that has given me a more complete understanding of myself.  This story continues to unfold in my memoir Daughter of Pornography. Stay tuned.