LOS ANGELES—Stoney Curtis considers his longevity in porn to be a combination of adaptability, survival instincts and shrewd business decisions.
Not to mention producing some of the most ridiculous series in the business and still generating profits 23 years later.
The owner of Lethal Hardcore, a porn ironman of sorts who overcame open heart surgery in 2014, has endured more than most from his generation of pornographers and is still rolling out one new release per week in a climate when others have scaled back their production schedules.
But Curtis says there is more to his success than creating movies such as That Rapper Destroyed My Crapper and Drop Them Drawers Give Daddy Some Candy, both of which are vying for 2016 AVN Awards for Clever Title of the Year, among other nominations for the 33rd annual ceremony on Jan. 23.
In this exclusive interview, the self-proclaimed “Brett Favre of Porn” discusses his prolific run through Porn Valley to where he is today.
AVN: How many years have you been in the adult biz now?
SC: Since 1993. Bill Clinton was taking office. Most of the girls in porn were not born or toddlers when I was starting in porn. While most of my contemporaries have disappeared I am still here doing one movie a week.
In 2014, my heart and lungs were stopped for eight hours while doctors performed open heart surgery on me but this couldn’t hold me down for long. I was back to shooting porn four months later. My studio was still releasing titles thanks to Chucky Sleaze who kept the perversion alive.
AVN: How would you describe how your career has evolved?
SC: I started out in features and jumped into the gonzo world in 1995. I was able to shoot successful movies for other studios while building my own brand Celestial Productions in 1998 which became Lethal Hardcore in 2004 when the porn industry turned more hardcore.
The series Hot Bods and Tailpipes with two girls and one guy in every scene launched my own distribution company strong.
I have had hit movies from ’95, ’97, ’98, 2000, 2002, 2004, etc. I believe I have a natural ability to supply the audience new creative ideas because I am such a huge fan of adult movies myself and try to think of sexual situations and titles that turn me on and then go shoot it.
Also I’ve picked great partners as well. Pulse Distribution confirms Lethal Hardcore is still one of the best sellers on DVD. AEBN and various VOD sites promote Lethal titles on their front page monthly. Lethal Hardcore is in the Top 10 most popular studios as far as views in the PornHub members section. They are a huge supporter of Lethal content and send members as well.
You can be a great pornographer but make bad business decisions and kill your business off. I consider myself a pornographer, not what I mainly see in the business today which is good camera guys. There’s a big difference.
Shooters will brag to me how good their lighting is and then I go, 'well she had a big ass and you hardly showed it,' or 'the camera angles are not good' or 'every scene looks the same to me. There are no surprises in the whole movie.' Or 'talent had no chemistry but the location was awesome.' I don’t get it. It doesn't work for me as a fan.
AVN: What do you attribute to your longevity?
SC: Understanding what my fans want; having a pulse on the trends that are happening in the world of porn; being able to watch a girl and say she is truly into the sex for more than the fame and money; evaluating male talent as well to determine if I like them to be in my movies or not; understanding passion and chemistry is key between two human bodies. I look for girls that will let you mind fuck them as well as fuck their body. Their aura is key. I don’t listen to what girls say as much as I feel their aura.
Girls will sometimes tell you what they think you want to hear to get a job. I prefer they be real about what and who they like. I don’t force females to do guys they don’t want to do. It isn’t fun to fuck a girl who doesn't want sex from you. What is the point?
So during interviews I can generally tell a lot about how true their sexual desire really is and what kinks they love. I don’t imitate what others are doing. I like to innovate by shooting for myself and hope others love it, too. I find that a lot of studios will copy ideas I have come up with over the years so I am more careful on my initial idea until it is released. For example, the Fuck My Mom and Me series I did in 2007. Look at the amount of similar titles that came out after June 2007. Look at the incest niche now. We like to think that Fuck My Mom and Me started this craze a bit. Studios refrained from doing incest stuff in 2006 and earlier.
AVN: What new series or titles are you planning to unveil in 2016?
SC: We are doing a whole amateur line called OC Amateurs that comes out on Jan. 12th with different editions like Laguna Beach Bunnies, Newport Beach Nymphs, and Huntington Beach Hunnies. Since I am the only one shooting down here I thought why not do a line around Orange County, California?
A new concept no one is doing is Boober Drivers, which is out January 26th. Girls or guys pull up the Boober Driver App and order a car. Either a man or a woman driver shows up and sex happens in the backseat of the car parked.
Manhandled Teens 1 comes out February 2nd. Girls are being held in the air for most of the scene, turned upside down and more. Also the original classic is back, the movie that changed porn, Fuck My Mom and Me 21.
AVN: What is it that keeps driving you to create new titles and continue producing porn?
SC: I have a burning desire to create a sexual idea that exists only in my brain. Then I will write it up and then cast it, shoot it and put it out and to watch it come alive is still so exciting and gratifying to me. Like when I did That Rapper Destroyed My Crapper inspired by a girl I knew that wanted to hang with a certain rapper and this was my assumption of what I believed would happen.
It is fun to create titles from personal experiences. It is an artistic expression. I still enjoy jacking off to porn daily and love watching and training new girls and turning them into great performers with some coaching.
AVN: What's the most rewarding part of making porn for a living?
SC: Dreams come true. Sexual fantasies played out by others is so hot. It is always a joy to make a living doing what you love.
AVN: How do you see the future of the adult entertainment industry?
SC: Tube sites are here to stay, so most studios work with them posting clips to promo their content and send people to become members. So they are the new affiliates. I see camming continuing to go strong. I think the business will bounce back some. Tubes are giving away less free, whole scenes and pushing more member-based sites. Porn content comes in cycles. Right now interracial is real hot so we’ll see what the next big trend is.