Home Peep Show Peep Show – Interview with Buck Angel, Part One

Peep Show – Interview with Buck Angel, Part One

Peep Show – Interview with Buck Angel, Part One
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Buck Angel is a porn star, a director/producer, a visionary, and a pioneer.  He’s also a trans guy, the first female-to-male transsexual performer to carve out a career for himself in the porn biz.  His fearlessness and hard work were rewarded when he received the first ever AVN Transsexual Performer of the Year Award in 2007.

Buck was born a woman and now lives as a man, and he is very open about his journey towards manhood.  He not only showcases his unique body and style in his porn, but he speaks publicly about self-acceptance, sexual fluidity, and identity politics.  One of the things that won us over about Buck Angel was his recent public service announcement encouraging transmen and transwomen to schedule proper gynecological or prostate check-ups.
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Mr. Angel is a gentleman, a hot number, and class act.  He not only maintains websites related to his porn career, but he also has one entirely dedicated to education.  This porn star isn’t just out for personal gain; he’s looking to change the world one newly-opened mind at a time.

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King is a Fink: Thanks for taking the time to talk with us, Buck.  One of the biggest things we’ve learned from the porn filmmakers we’ve interviewed for PEEP SHOW is that it’s essential to find your niche and connect with that audience. Do you find the audience for your movies, or does your audience find you? What does that process look like?

Buck Angel: This is obviously very important. When I first started I had no idea who was going to be interested in my films or website. I was basically starting something new in the adult industry. I had no idea if anyone even thought about guys like me. So what I did was make 3 different films: one with me and all women, one with me and all men, and one with me plus men and women so I could test the markets. The film that got the best response was the one with me and all men, with gay men buying at the highest rates. That is how I found my audience in the beginning.

The gay men community was the one that really supported me the most, and many said they had always fantasied about a guy like me. WOW! Go figure that one out! Then as my films and web presence grew that started to change, and many woman started becoming fans of my work. That makes me super happy, as I think woman are a harder sell for pornography than men.

KFink: In your IdeaCity 2010 presentation, you said that your work is “more than pornography.” Which comes first: your activism or your artistry? And how do they intersect?
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Buck: In the beginning I would have never said that. I just started making porn because of my passion for it, and, as a business man, I saw something in the adult market that was not being filled. So off I went to make some hot porn. But through the years my audience grew to include people who were not interested in my adult film work but rather my message of self acceptance. I noticed this area of my work needing to be covered as well. I felt that many of the opportunities I could have were not coming to me, because I was just a “porn star” which kind of made me mad. But I know how closed-minded the world is about sex work. So I decided that I needed to switch gears and get myself in other markets to spread my message. At the same time, I didn’t want to forget about my adult work, as this is very important to me.
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I think at this point my adult films and my acceptance education efforts sort of play off each other. There is no way I will ever be able to get rid of my adult film background, nor do I want to. So I use it in a positive way when I speak. I talk about how porn has helped me to come to terms with my vagina and how it has helped me become a proud and successful person. My hope is that combining sex work with motivational speaking people will be able to see sex work in a different light.
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KFink: You’re very active on Twitter, and we’ve noticed that you even respond (in a classy way, we might add) to hecklers. How important is it to you to interact with your audience, and how does what your fans say influence your projects?
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Buck: I fought the whole Twitter thing in the beginning, which is weird for me because I am all about new technology, But something about it really turned me off. Then I saw the rapid growth and the potential of what this little thing could do for business. Now I LOVE Twitter. (How embarrassing!) I love to respond to stupid people, and it lets me show the world what I have to deal with as a pioneer and advocate. It draws more people into what I have to say and who I am.
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Of course, I also love my fans! I love to be able to just Twitter a “woof” to them, and see their love roll back in. Sending small gestures like that shows that I am in tune to my fans and audience.  In fact, they influence me quite a bit. I want to please them, and I want them to get their needs met, too.  I often ask for suggestions on what they want to see or what they want me to write about. I also interact with my fans a lot on Facebook. It’s pretty amazing.
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KFink: How much time do you spend on promotion, marketing, and distribution? What are some hurdles you’ve encountered in these areas?
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Buck: I swear I have to rip myself away from work. I am a workaholic. I would say I’m on the net everyday in some way promoting myself on my blogs, YouTube, Twitter, Facebook, email, etc. I’m always looking for new ways to get my name out there and taking as many interviews as I possibly can. I like to say I am a “Media Whore,” and, because of my efforts, I’ve seen a growth in the knowledge about me and my work, including more mainstream media contacting me, artists wanting to include me in their projects, and even a theater group wanting to do a show with me (more info on the soon). There’s not enough time in one day to cover everything. I make lists so I don’t get overwhelmed and forget stuff. But there’s a limit.  I work hard, but I also take care not to overextend myself or not take care of myself. The lists and a schedule that includes ‘me time’ helps.
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In the second half of his PEEP SHOW interview, Buck talks about the difference between indie and mainstream porn, how he finds his collaborators, and where he’s at with his upcoming documentary.  Think you’re ready for more?

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KingIsAFink Jessica King grew up in the suburbs of Chicago and eventually moved to the city via China; country mouse Julie Keck entered Chicago via Jessica. Their first films were inspired by inside jokes and made primarily to tickle the fancies of their closest friends. In subsequent films they explored the exquisite embarrassment associated with living. King and Keck’s most recent efforts, Anxiety Acres and Libidoland, showcase characters venturing out of their comfort zones and flailing in the quicksand of their own imaginations. In addition to producing ultra-low budget films, Jessica and Julie write short and feature length screenplays in a variety of genres. Their primary goal: to tell stories that are at once familiar, uncomfortable, demented, and exhilarating. They’re currently working on a movie dramatic thriller called TILT with Minnesota director Phil Holbrook. Julie and Jessica chronicle their work at kingisafink.com and are active on Twitter, Vimeo, and YouTube.

Comment(2)

  1. I've enjoyed your porn Buck, but also have been glued to the set when your IdeaCity 2010 came out online. This is a hot move on your part and I welcome it's maturation and future fruitfulness.
    You Rock Dude!!
    a fellow transman

    1. Hey Bud! Thank you so much for watching and supporting my films. Not many transmen were big fans of mine, That's a whole other interview!
      I was really surprised and honored when IdeaCity2010 came to me. It was such an amazing experience for me. Things have only been getting better from there.
      Thanks again bro!
      WOOF!
      Buck Angel

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