I always knew that it was an issue, but more so in terms of being an actor in the adult arena, and having amateur companies pop up makes things difficult for actors. I wasn’t necessarily thinking about who it affects outside of the industry, and as the project went on I started understanding more of how the digital age is affecting young women. Initially, I knew it was an issue, but it was more about how it’s changing the actual industry and the profitability. It was this project that opened my eyes to how it’s changing the everyday world and people outside of my industry.
On the flipside, do you see any benefits brought about by the digital age?
Well, I would say that it stays more of a negative. The world constantly evolving and changing is natural, and I believe that the adult industry actually pushed the digital age to be what it is; there are probably more porn on the Internet than anything else. They also encourage different aps and different digital enhancements of this and that. So I think that the adult industry is encouraging the digital, but at the same time, the digital age is hurting the industry. Everything’s a natural progression.
In Sexy Baby, the filmmakers talk to a bunch of kids on the street, and some of the guys they interview talk about how watching porno movies has given them certain expectations of how women should act in the bedroom. That’s pretty alarming, to think that teenage boys are watching porn and then going out on dates expecting the girls to do everything they saw on their laptop.
Yeah, and this project actually opened my eyes to that, also. I’ll go back to what I say in the film, and that’s that adult film actors are just that: They’re actors. They are going above and beyond in a fantasy world, and that is meant for entertainment, not reality. It’s a very competitive industry where everybody is trying to one-up each other, so what you see on camera isn’t what you would experience at home—what you see on camera is an actor, a producer, a director, and a production company trying to one-up, for cash money purposes, their competition. They’re trying to win awards and make money; they’re not necessarily trying to capture someone’s heart.
There’s a scene in the film where you say that porn isn’t for “teenagers to learn about sex,” which speaks directly to that point. Outside of something like Sexy Baby, is there any way to educate kids about the realities and misconceptions of the adult industry? Because people who watch porn online are searching for instant gratification, not the bigger picture.
Right, and as a teenager, it’s always about instant gratification. That’s emphasized now because we’re in the digital age, and they get information immediately, which allows for them have gratification immediately. It’s definitely a world now where everything is at your fingertips, whether it be information, food, or sex, especially for teenagers. If you think about when youwere a teenager, it was always about what was in front of your face, not what’s happening down the line in ten years.
Teenagers even have a hard time coming up with, “What am I going to do for a living?” Let alone, “How am I going to have a relationship?” Decisions that are about the future are really difficult for a teenager to make, anyway.
The filmmakers do a clever, slick job of weaving in popular song lyrics and video clips to emphasize how distorted views of sexuality are all over the forms of entertainment that teenagers enjoy, as well.
Absolutely, it comes from all sides. In fact, I was just at the mall the other day, and I started stripping in 1994; I was in high school, and I had to go incognito to the mall to find a pair of shoes that were acceptable for stripping. They were four- or five-inch heels, and for a 17-year-old girl to buy a pair of shoes like that, there was something very wrong with you. I had to be very sneaky; I had to buy them at a mall that was nowhere near my house and not spend too much money so nobody saw how much money I was spending. And there was only one store that I could buy those shoes at, so I could dance.
Now, when I go to the mall, every shoe store in the mall has a pair of what, in my industry, we would call “hooker heels.” They’re presented for anyone, from size 6 for women to size 12 for men, to wear. That wasn’t the case when I first started dancing. Even in shoes, songs, or whatever, sex is everywhere now. It’s thrown in their faces constantly. For kids, it’s normal—they don’t know anything else.
One of the other subjects in Sexy Baby, the young girl, Winifred, watches her younger sister—who can’t be any older than six or seven—emulating everything she sees happen in a Lady Gaga video that’s playing on the TV screen. So it’s even trickling down to kids who aren’t even teenagers yet.
I don’t necessarily agree with sheltering a child, but why not have your six or seven-year-old sing happy songs? Songs from the ’50s, maybe? [Laughs.] There was a time where everything was about love and happiness, and not necessarily sex.
In the film, you also talk about how there are many women who see you as Nakita Kash and want to be like you, but what they don’t realize is that you want to be more like them. Younger girls see women in your industry, it seems, and they think that’s how you are all the time; they don’t realize that you’re a real person who goes home and strives for a normal life once the cameras turn off.
That’s very true. Having to be on, perfect, and 100% all of the time is exhausting, it’s difficult, and, for the most part, it’s not real. Everyone likes to play dress-up, and everyone likes to be super-sexy and pretty, thought of as someone that others want to be or be with. But when you go home, you want to take off all of the makeup, put on some sweats, and cuddle with someone you love, who doesn’t care about seeing you in five-inch heels, makeup, and fake eyelashes, or showing boobs and butt in your dress.
Winifred actually sets up a “photo shoot” to get new “sexy” pictures up on her Facebook page. That’s what makes Sexy Baby so effective, and important: It brings a lot of what’s negatively affecting young girls to light.
I think that if the words “pretend,” “fantasy,” and “playing dress-up” are used with a child who’s under ten, they’ll probably understand that it’s for play. It’s about communicating with them about how that’s now how they should be all the time, or in public. Having a sexy dance isn’t necessarily something they should go to pre-school with. [Laughs.]