LONG BEACH, Calif.—Jake Malone, a 12-year veteran of the adult industry and the director of several popular fetish series including Bitchcraft, Fetish Fuck Dolls and Fuck Slaves, committed suicide earlier today by jumping from the Gerald Desmond Bridge in Long Beach. He was 61 years old.
According to the , the California Highway Patrol responded to a call about a stalled U-Haul van on the bridge at 7:42 a.m., but when they arrived, the van was empty and Malone, wearing a leather jacket, was seen climbing up the bridge supports. CHP officers tried to talk Malone down, but were unsuccessful, and he jumped to his death shortly after 8 a.m.
Known to his friends as "Parker," Malone was described as a gentle person who had "a beautiful mind" and who was "a total riot," though in his later days he was consumed by his drug addiction. Still, his friend Tim Von Swine stated that Malone "did have demons and addictions that never got too far out of his reach." Others disagreed regarding Malone's ability to control his drug use.
"Parker was such a perverted genius, and I say that with the utmost respect," Von Swine wrote in an email to AVN. "Back in our time working at Red Light District/Platinum X Pictures, he was always getting flak from Vince for pushing things waay too far, like the time he shot a scene where a gal had a lit cigarette sticking out of her butthole. Parker didn't see anything 'over the top' about it because he was so into it, LOL. He would always address me as 'Timmy Von Schweinen-Heinen Schtuffer,' and I'd say, 'Parker Bob-Barker!' Dude was great to have as a friend and a great weapon to have on set to help out with any p.a. or camera duties. I'm too bummed out to really add anything else. God luv ya, Parker. RIP."
According to the , Malone had directed just over 100 movies, working exclusively for Evil Angel beginning in 2007 but had earlier amassed a large library with Red Light District and Platinum X. Malone had also appeared in almost 120 productions, many of which he had directed.
"He had been a friend of Patrick Collins decades ago," recalled Evil Angel General Manager Christian Mann, "and had done some work with Patrick back in the days when Evil and Elegant Angel were still under the same roof, and he had also spent some time with Dion Giarusso, who, along with Joey Silvera, were arguably his closest friends in the industry."
Indeed, it was Silvera who brought Malone back from Thailand, where Malone had emigrated more than a year ago with the intention of starting a guitar repair business and becoming a Thai citizen.
"I just want to say, it was good to get him home," Silvera told AVN. "He reached out, and we hung out, and I saw his condition, and I thought it was a good idea to get him on a plane, and it was good that he came back here so that his friends can feel it. It's important that people know that, that he died here, though how much of him was here, I don't know, but he was here at least. It was good that he got back here, because if he'd died over there, it would have been very bad."
"Obviously, everybody's going to say that he was fucking brilliant," Silvera continued. "He was brilliant, and so much fun to talk to. He liked input and he liked to get opinions; the give-and-take with him was incredible. And he genuinely liked people; he didn't have a mean bone in his body. He was real, he was a real person. Basically, it was just great to get him back. We were just lucky to get him back, because he wasn't going to be there much longer."
Silvera said that Malone had described his attempt to start the guitar repair business in Thailand as "the worst business decision in the history of business."
Attempts to contact Dion Giarusso were unsuccessful at press time.
"Jake was always harmless to others but harmful to himself," Mann assessed. "He was like our fucked-up little brother who just couldn't get it together. I just want to say that unfortunately, this is a horrible and painful way to have to be reminded of the destructive nature of drug addiction, and most people will never realize what an interesting mind this guy had. Jake Malone did have a beautiful mind. To me, that always shined through the most in his still photography work; he had such a sense of irony and humor and he was able to really make statements in his still photography in a way that always made me think that in some regards, he could have really been a successful photographer, not necessarily limited to our industry.
"While people frequently thought that his pornography was rough, the truth of the matter is, his pornography always had women in charge, and he himself, sexually, was really a submissive personality," Mann continued. "A lot of people could do fetish photography but he was able to make statements about role-play and irony in the course of creating his fetish photography. I always just thought he was a really clever guy. And he was a musician, and was a well-educated, well-read guy."
Mann also released an official statement on behalf of both himself and Evil Angel.
"I learned this morning that Jake Malone is the man who jumped to his death from the Gerald Desmond Bridge in Long Beach earlier today," the statement read. "Jake had been back in the United States for only a few weeks following a hiatus in Thailand where he tried unsuccessfully to set up a guitar repair business and become a permanent resident. A brilliantly talented man as a pornographer, photographer and musician, he was also a perpetually troubled and self-destructive soul who could not escape the demons of his years-long addiction to drugs. Even though Jake had ceased directing movies a couple of years ago, we considered him a member of the Evil Angel family. I spoke with Jake a couple of weeks ago. We talked about getting together for a visit now that he was back in the U.S. It was clear to me than that he was suffering from depression and in the throes of active drug addiction. I've lost a friend, as have many other people in our business. Our industry lost one of its most talented and humorous creative personalities. He referred to himself with pride as a pornographer—and that he was."
UPDATE: Brandon Iron, a long-time friend of Malone's, had been oveseas when Malone committed suicide, but said he had seen him the previous Friday, whee the pair had talked for an hour and a half.
"It was sort of a dark conversation," Iron said, "but you know, you always try to hold out light for somebody and just say, 'Okay, this is how we're going to get you back on track,' and this and that, and then it was kind of a blunt conversation too, because he was sort of fidgety, and I didn't like to confront him, but I said, 'Are you on drugs now?' And he said 'Yes,' and this and that, and I said 'Oh, you've got to stay away from what's hurting you the most. Please stop that.' And I wanted to have a meal with him, but he said he'd already eaten, and when you looked at him, he didn't, obviously; he was just living off coffee and snacks or whatever; he was just not in good shape mentally, physically, spiritually—he was a wreck."
Iron had suggested that Malone check himself into a rehab facility, but Malone told him that he'd tried to get into a facility in Tarzana, but was told they had a 45-day waiting list. He also had with him, at their meeting, forms to obtain government assistance, but apparently those were never filed. Iron was also dismayed that although Malone had sold his entire catalog to Evil Angel, he apparently had none of the proceeds left, and Iron speculated that Malone might have been robbed of the funds while in Thailand but was too embarrassed to admit it.
Malone had also left several notes, one addressed to Iron, who reported that it essentially said, "Thanks a lot for your support. I'm just at the end of my rope," adding, "and he wished me well with my daughter and girlfriend here."
"But that's not how you want to be remembered in this business," Iron added. "Jake was kind, he helped people; he helped me a lot too. I used to work for him, and he's one of those guys who just accepted what he was given at face value. He didn't expect you to be the greatest; he just expected you to be a true representative of your own feelings, and to just go with them, just let the beast loose. And that's what hurts, because he Got It, whereas a lot of other people either over-direct or they muddy it up somehow, but he was in tune with everyone's feelings on set, and he let you be whoever you wanted to be, and it was really important to him that everything just be authentic. That's really sad, that it comes to all this."
"Whatever demons he had, I just hope that he's at peace now, and that people appreciate the good side of him too, because he really helped a lot of people in the business," Iron continued. "There was a positive vibe on his sets and he had good intentions and you felt that when you were with him. You felt like he was creating something that was worth watching, that he put his time and effort into so you cared about it too. It wasn't just phoning stuff in with him, so I respected him very much for that."