Back in the 70s and 80s, the director used to be a highly exalted figure in gay porn. Auteurs like Joe Gage, William Higgins, and Kristen Bjorn created styles distinctive enough to become brands for a certain type of porn.
In the internet era, though, the director is largely absent from the picture. For Evil Jeff, who directs all of Randy Blue’s material and now serves as Creative Director for the whole company, this scenario is just fine with him. He’s long been keeping his true identity a secret, for fear his mother would Google him and see JIZ: The Abortion Episode, one of Jeff’s most-popular YouTube videos, which features his voice dubbed over a Jem & the Holograms PSA to create a raunchy, foul-mouthed tale of forced abortions and scat-bottom child hookers. Doing comedy goes hand-in-hand with doing porn, as you can imagine, so I called my longtime friend to dish the dirt on the sexy, shocking, weird, and hilarious things that happen behind the scenes at Randy Blue.
Evil Jeff: This is how we first met on Skype, when you interviewed me for BUTT Magazine.
Adam: But that was not about your pornography career.
That was before I had a pornography career.
Yeah. Well now if we’re focusing on your porn career, obviously you’ve had to overcome a lot of challenges, being a porn director with progeria?
What!? (laughs) I’m offended that you made that joke. Do you feel like I look like I had that disease?
No I’m just joking because it’s mean and funny.
I’m gonna cry. Is that you’re goal to make everyone feel vulnerable?
Yes. That’s how I manipulate them into a good interview. You know about that, you’re a porn director, you know how to get people to open up, no pun intended.
That’s true. But I feel I’m pretty nice for a porn director. I try to make people feel very comfortable. I try not to take advantage of people. I hear some horror stories of people that come from other studios and I’m kind of like, ewww. I know my porn name is Evil Jeff, but I’m actually a big softy.
Well I know you so I know you are. But I also know you have a malicious streak.
Well if you try to fuck with me, then you’re gonna be in trouble.
Tell me about a time when someone tried to fuck with you and they got in trouble.
There was this one model in particular who just felt that he could just come in and not get hard and not perform and then still do a scene and still get paid, and not do any work out of it. And I just had to read him the riot act, and be like um, “The point of you being here is to do a scene, and if you’re not gonna perform or get hard or cum, then we’re going to send you home.” I found a lot of times as soon as we threaten to send somebody home suddenly they turn into a good performer. Or Chris Rockway. Pretty much all my interactions with Chris Rockway is mostly me yelling at him. We have a bit of a love/hate relationship.
Oh he’s just been there forever, and so he’s one of the few models that also likes to give his 2 cents on how the scene should be directed, which I don’t want. He’s also someone you kind of have to really crack the whip with. He’s just been doing it so long, he’s very set in his ways. There was one time where he was doing a scene and I kept calling out his name to do something and he was not listening to me and I was like Chris you’re not listening to me, and he was joking around and he was like, “Well that’s not my real name, so when you say that name I don’t realize you’re talking to me.” I was like fine from now on when I say “Asshole,” you’ll know that’s you. So then it became, “Asshole, move your hand out of the way.” But I love Chris Rockway, he’s a special guy.
Do you ever use your position to get revenge on people?
There are some models who come in with a lot of attitude, and I’m here to help you and make you feel comfortable, but if you’re going to be a bitch to me, I’m not going to be your friend either. I have one model who I love now, but when he first came in he was a bitch to everyone. Literally everyone on set wanted to slap him, and finally the other model was like “Where should I cum?” And I was like “You’re cumming on his face.” And the bitchy model was like “What?” And I was like “Yes, you put me through all that today, you’re going to take the load to the face.”
Do you consider your relationship with the models a family-type situation?
There are the models that have been there a while who I consider family, but a lot of time it’s new people coming in, and we behave pretty professionally. We’ll take them out to dinner, but a lot of it is, you come in and go to the hotel. We aren’t very big on like, “Let’s go out and party!” A lot of times some models, especially the gay models who want to come in and be a gay porn star and they want to come in and live the porn star life and go out and party and get their pictures taken. We aren’t like that at all. But the people that stay with us, those become our family.
So I’m assuming these are young people in the middle of nowhere, the people who want to come in and be big deal porn stars…
Yeah I think we only have like maybe, at this point, only three porn stars who live in LA. Everyone else we fly in from the middle of nowhere. Apparently, the hottest guys in the world all live in like a place that has a population of 5,000.
I try, but because I’m in LA, pretty much if they’re hot, they’ve probably already been asked. So I’ve actually had to change my business card, so it says “Don’t take offense, but you should do porn,” because people get very angry when you ask them. Usually when I’m out at a bar, and I see a go-go dancer that I don’t recognize from porn, I’ll go up to them, hand them my card, and I’d say 7 times out of 10 they get really angry with me. They’re like, “What? I would never do porn!” And I’m like, “A guy was just jerking you off for a dollar bill. I don’t think it was such a stretch to ask if you wanted to get into porn.” I’ve never been able to successfully get someone to do a scene that way yet.
You get a commission if you do.
Yeah. Do you know anybody?
I know lots of guys. But what type of guy are you looking for?
Our thing is we like diversity, so we’re always looking for models of color, we’re always looking for gingers and just things that you haven’t seen. We like to have some older, some younger, a lot of companies, they kind of want everyone to look the same. We kind of like to have the variety. But I like to say, my goal when we’re looking for someone, we like someone that has that movie or television star quality.
Yes, and granted we do accept models with tattoos, but that’s not necessarily our look, and honestly it’s almost impossible to find a porn model that does not have tattoos. Randy Blue is definitely more of a clean-cut, vanilla site. The hate mail we get is because we’re too vanilla, but we also get a lot of fan mail because that’s what some people like. There’s people who don’t want that really rough, dirty, raunchy type of thing. They just want to see really hot, pretty guys fucking each other. That’s what we’re there to offer.
How many of your guys are straight?
It kind of varies over time. But I’d say at any given time it’s probably about 60 percent straight/40 percent gay. And then there’s that 60 percent straight I don’t know how straight necessarily all the ones who identify as straight really are. So I guess it’s all up for debate.
I remember you telling me really amazing stories about straight guys who will come in and be straight and do the gay porn scene and freak out because they like it.
Yeah. I’ve had times where it’s a good freak out and I’ve had times where it’s a bad freak out. There was one model, he was straight and he came in and we had to ease him into it, we started him off with just a blowjob scene.
He would give the blowjob or get it?
With the straight models it’s like, you’ll get a blowjob. So we brought him in and he was getting the blowjob, and he kept touching the model’s dick, and so I said “Do you want to suck his dick too?” And he said “Okay” and you could tell he had been hungry for years. He was sucking that dick like it had the last oxygen on earth, but then toward the end of the scene when we were about to do the cumshot, he just fell hard. He started being like, “I don’t want to do this anymore, I’m straight I don’t like this.” And I’m like you were so into sucking his dick before, what changed? And I could tell he suddenly realized how much he liked it, and it fucked with his head. I’m not someone who is going to force someone to do something, so we ended up having to cancel the shoot. But I’ve had the opposite where someone was like, “I’m straight, I’m straight, I don’t like it, and so we brought him in to do a dick sucking scene, and then he confessed, “Oh actually I did mess around with one guy in high school.” And then we got to the first hardcore scene and he was like, “I don’t want to suck a dick.” And I was like, “Well you have to suck a dick. You’re doing porn. That’s part of the rules, when you’re doing the hardcore scene you have to suck dick, fuck, kiss, come on. It has to look like you’re having fun.” We got to the dick sucking, and once again I saw a light bulb going off in his head, when the dick went in his mouth. And then next shoot I saw him, he was like, “Oh I have a boyfriend now.” I find it very fascinating how sometimes it takes a straight man to do gay porn for them to realize they’re gay.
I like my bears the way I like my blow jobs. Gummy.
— Jiz (@Jizismyname) January 14, 2014
It’s super crazy that someone would be so afraid of doing something like this and then the way they decide to subconsciously push themselves into that place is do to it on film for the whole world to see.
Yeah. I get a lot of people who come to me and they’re convinced, no one is really straight. They say, “If they did it with a guy then they’re really gay.” But it’s like gay guys can have sex with women before they come out. It is possible. I would say of that 60 percent, probably a third are really straight, a third are bi but just want to date women in real life, and a third are probably in the closet.
Tell me how you wound up working at Randy Blue?
I followed Jeremy Lucido who does Starrfucker Magazine and he’s the photographer and production manager at Randy Blue. I followed him on Twitter, he followed Jiz, my alter ego on Twitter, and @Jizismyname – follow me on Twitter. He just posted a tweet once, and said “Oh we’re looking for an editor.” And I applied, and I was one of the few people who actually went to film school. And I got the job, and then I just worked my way up the ranks and now I’m the creative director.
What was the type of stuff you were making in film school?
They were gay themed but they were all dark and twisted and depressing and sad. Actually the one film that I made, that spent a lot of time making, and it was so depressing and sad, that I decided I only wanted to do comedy after. And that’s what led me getting into comedy and doing my YouTube channel with Golden Shower Girls and the Jiz videos. And that’s pretty much what my videos are like now. So that kind of goes hand in hand with doing porn. They complement each other.
Sex is comedy, right?
Exactly. Although, when I first started out, I tried really hard to do really funny comedic porn premises but I realized when you’re dealing with people with actors who don’t understand comedic timing. It’s very hard trying to teach someone who’s never acted before to have some kind of semblance of acting ability.
I would imagine you would just have to direct the way John Waters does it where he acts out all the parts.
Yes. A lot of times you have to do line readings and have them try and imitate that. It depends. You get all different types of talent, there’s people who are actually really good. They can improvise and go for it. And there are other people where you have to say every word of what they’re supposed to say. That includes during the sex. The amount of my voice that needs to be cut out of some of the scenes is extreme, because there’s a lot of people who are stiffer performers. And you can lead the horse to water but you can’t always make them drink. I can only push someone so far. I think this is true of all porn companies you can have the most beautiful model in the world and they’re gorgeous but they might not be the best sexual performer. But people love them anyway and want them to come back for more. And I’m like, “Okay, we’ll work with this.”
Who is the best actor at Randy Blue?
I would have to say Diego Sans is the best actor. He is someone that’s just so comfortable with who he is, and he’s always just having so much fun with what he’s doing. He’s just very authentic. With whatever he’s doing. He’s probably my favorite person to work with because I know that there won’t be a problem.
How do you recognize when a performer is stiff?
The thing I always try to emphasize is eye contact. When the performer is not looking at the other performer, especially if it’s the top just staring at his dick when he’s pounding the other guys’ hole. Or a bottom who just has his eyes closed and is making a face waiting for it to be over. You can try to tell people to mix it up, but there’s only so much you can do. In the early dawn of the internet porn era, if you watch early porn from everywhere it was like, if the guy was hot he did not have to do anything. I think now that there’s so much competition you have to step it up. You can’t just be hot, and stand there and think people are going to give a shit. Blogs will tear you apart. They will eviscerate you.
Well there’s been so many years of “in out, in out, blowjob, rimming, fucking, the end.”
What I just try to emphasize is, interact with each other. If you’re talking to each other and looking at each other, and you’re smiling at each other, then it’s going to look like you’re having a good time. But the fans are fickle. I’ve had experiences where two straight guys who are just there to do their job and the scene comes out and people go, “They’re gay they were so into it, it was so hot.” And I’ve had scenes where gay guys are making love and they’re so into each other, and then the scene comes out and I see blog people writing, “It’s so stiff.” And I was like “I give up!” I don’t know.
Lets talk about your other career, as JIZ. That’s turned into something of a huge deal for you, that’s how I interviewed you all those years ago. How did that start?
I was listening to a comedy podcast, this was the first time I was really getting into comedy, and there were these old G.I. Joe parodies by Eric Fenster that somebody dubbed over. I thought they were hilarious, and said there should be a gay version of these. And I remembered Jem had these PSAs. And I had already done a Golden Shower Girls video, dubbing over The Golden Girls. They’ve all just been taken down off YouTube. And so then I did the Jem voice overs, and my friend said, “You have to put these online.” I was like, “They’re too raunchy, too offensive.” And people said just put them up. So I put them up just thinking my friends would see them, and it just kind of exploded from there. It’s been like five years, and I’m still making them. I do club performances and go to events and I’m doing the latest Jiz video which is going to have Willam from RuPaul’s Drag Race doing a cameo.
You used to keep your full name and everything a secret, but you’ve kind of come out of that shell a little bit.
Yeah I don’t care as much anymore. My whole thing before was I just didn’t want my mom to Google my real name and then see gay porn and Jiz Abortion videos as the first thing that came up. I’m now at a point where I don’t care that much. I talk a lot in the Randy Blue videos, but I never show my face and I never will, because I feel like porn should just be the porn stars. I don’t think the director should have their face on there.
Then you end up being like Jake Cruise, and you’re like “I’m a star too!”
Exactly. Plus, I’m a little too people already on the YouTube comments on the interviews I give, I already hear enough about, “OH my god get that faggot that’s talking to them, make him shut up.” The last thing I need is to have my face on there to have trolls attack me too. It’s like, “Hey this faggot is the one who made the video you just jerked off to. Have some respect.”
What was the first scene you directed?
The first scene I fully directed by myself I think might have been Chris Rockway and Caden Ross. I definitely was very nervous, because it was Chris Rockway. When I was younger back in, like, 2006 I joined Randy Blue because I thought Chris was hot, and now here I was directing him. It was very nerve wracking. But now I’ve gotten to know him so well that the thought of me ever actually being attracted to him is just laughable to me now.
When you’re watching, you imagine porn is directed in a “if it gets my dick hard, it’s good” fashion.
That’s the thing in my head. I can still look and be like yes, what is happening now is really hot, but then oh wait that light needs to be moved, you can’t see the penetration move your hand out of the way, all that stuff takes it away. Directing porn definitely changes how you have sex in real life.
How has it changed your life?
I’m way bossier. I was hooking up with a guy once and I suddenly just was like, “You need to make more noise.” And he was like “what?” And I was like, “Oh my god I’m so sorry that’s usually what I yell on set at people.” There’s times when I forget I’m not in a scene and I can’t just yell at somebody that they’re doing something badly. It’s made my sex life better though, because I do what I want. I’m very much more in tune with what I want.
What is it that you want?
I think better lovers are selfish lovers. I think if you get really into doing what you like to do, that will turn your partner on, because they will be turned on by how turned on you are. I think if two people go into sex being selfish it actually will probably end up being really good sex. I hate all that, “Just make it about the needs of the other person.” Two people being like “Is this okay? Do you like that?” Shut up!
What’s the worst part of being on set?
Well there’s the grossest thing which I don’t want to talk about. The gross stuff is obvious.
That sometimes the models don’t douche properly and they poop.
Yeah. But luckily that happens very rarely. I wouldn’t be able to do this job if that happened all the time.
You draw on other films to come up with ideas from movies right? Your Welcome To L.A. series was inspired by a famous film, right?
There were certain scenes in Mulholland Drive that I thought would make a good gay porn, and that’s where Welcome to L.A. came from. For the second series of Welcome to L.A., I’m drawing a lot of inspiration from the movie Drive with Ryan Gosling. I did a Twilight Zone porn parody. But as much as I would love to go all artsy-fartsy film school on something, I still need something to be sexy. Our fans still want it to be hot and sexy. I think sometimes you can suffer from Lady Gaga syndrome. You can make it so artsy-fartsy, but it’s still a damn pop song, stop taking it so seriously. For me, it’s still porn, you still want to jerk off to it. And sometimes if they get too experimental it doesn’t become sexy anymore. It becomes beautiful, but I don’t think you necessarily want to jerk off to it anymore.
That’s a good place to end. I hope the progeria clears up.
Adam Baran is a filmmaker, blogger, former online editor of Butt Magazine and co-curator of Queer/Art/Film. His short film JACKPOT, about a porn-hunting gay teen, won Best Short Film at the Miami Gay and Lesbian Film Festival, and was recently featured on The Huffington Post, Queerty, and Towleroad, among others. He is a features programmer at Outfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival and NewFest in New York. In his spare time, he complains about things to his friends. “Fisting for Compliments”, his weekly musings about the intersection of sex, art, porn, and history, will appear every Monday on TheSword. You can contact him at Adam@TheSword.com and follow him on Twitter at @ABaran999. Check out his previous columns in the Fisting For Compliments Archive.