Who woulda thought Ed Powers would be up for a Comeback of the Year Award?
Powers, who’s been nominated in that XRCO category this year, was away from the adult business for six years, and, in that time ballooned to 300 pounds on a diet of marijuana, binging and self-pity.
“I disappeared. I vanished. I looked like I was 75 years old, Powers said.
Powers, 58, was a guest on Rebecca Bardoux’s Internet Show last Friday night and explained what happened.
Powers who’s often joked that he’s “the least endowed guy in the business,” talked about being in “a dark place.”
“First of all I was in a big house,” Powers continued.
“And then my dog after 14 years passed away. He was in all my movies. He was barking or humping somebody…and I just closed myself off and sat on the couch. I don’t know if I ever admitted this in public, but I smoked pot, ate, and that’s probably how I got to be 300 pounds. I dare not do that these days.”
During that time Powers associated with some select friends and got to know his family a bit better, however he got to the point where he couldn’t look in a mirror any longer.
“I couldn’t see myself like that.”
Then Powers went to a doctor to discover that he was Type 2 diabetic.
“My blood was 492- and that’s real high. I could have been in a coma. I went online to look at what I could eat. I didn’t want to take any medications. I just changed my whole life around.
“Mentally, I went from listening to industrial dance music to classical music and just changed.”
According to Powers he now works out every day and lost 150 pounds.
“What happens when you go through these dark periods, you learn a lot about yourself and about other people; and your trust issues- who you should trust, who you shouldn’t.
“In this business we know there are great people and people who are less than great. Just like any business.”
Powers, who’s been an advocate of condoms for many years, says he’ll only work with girls who have fresh tests.
“For the longest time I was using condoms – long before [Measure] B hit California. I personally was using condoms even orally because there was like 70 or 80 cases that AIM was telling me about every month. People were getting gonorrhea and those forms of diseases. I just didn’t want any part of it because I never caught anything.”
“But I hear about girls without tests going out there [as escorts] and are doing so-called ‘privates’ and ‘paid auditions’ with let’s say certain people in this business. That voids those tests immediately.
“And then this whole thing about testing is almost a ruse in a sense because it’s, like what is it? It doesn’t mean anything.”
Being on the front line, Powers said he’s seen a lot of fringe agents who’ve been sending their girls out on privates before they even get tested, for fear of losing the girl because she’s not getting enough work.
“It’s even questionable about the tests they take.”
Powers, who says it casts a bad mark on the industry, is all for self-policing.
“Like we used to. Like I even did back in the day.”
Powers would often warn girls about certain individuals. Bardoux said the problem with that is those you’re offering advice to might think you’ve got a case of sour grapes.
One such girl recently told Powers that he must be “competitive” to say something like that.
Another girl told him about how she went on three paid anal auditions and wasn’t getting call backs.
“They really believe these guys are going to call them back for work.”
Powers explained that “paid auditions” was the new gimmick in the industry to sidestep the issues of escorting and prostitution.
“The new girls are thinking that’s how it’s done, I guess.”
When Powers is asked by these girls whether they should listen to their agents on such issues, he finds it hard to make the point that they should seriously think about what they’re doing.
Powers acknowledges that while people have hidden agendas in porn, it’s hard for a newcomer, especially with parent issues, to separate those who are genuinely helping them from those who are taking advantage of them.
Powers noted that since his return to porn he’s no longer doing DVDs, that his content is released through www.hotmovies.com and www.edpowersvod.com
“I’ve started with an all-new Dirty Debutantes; I left off at Volume 369. I’ve got Volume 375 coing out.”
Powers said on April 15th, HotMovies will be matching dollar-for-dollar income generated that day to fighting Measure B.
Powers began shooting his Dirty Debutantes series in 1990. Prior to that in 1988 he had another one called Bus Stop Tales.
“That was the break-through,” he noted.
“That’s where I went up to girls and couples at bus stops and got ‘em back to my house if not to have sex, to discuss it, to see how far they would go. Every movie was seduction, little to the greatest extent. I was utilizing POV before it was really applied in the way it’s applied today. It was amateur and pro-amateur so to speak.”
In fact, Powers said he was shooting “gonzo” before the term was even coined.
“Gene Ross and I got into an argument at AVN over what category I should be in. I said I didn’t think it was fair that I was in the same category as John Stagliano who was a filmmaker.
“What he was doing was like me being me; but he [Ross] said maybe you’re Gonzo and Gonzo was coined. It was out of that discussion, argument or debate we were having. But I was thinking I was breaking ground.
“No matter the rumors or stories that you hear about how this happened, I befriended Jamie Gillis around the same time,” Powers continued.
“He had a concept, an idea to go in a limo with a girl and pick up guys to have sex with the girl in the limo. Which was a completely different idea. He was living with me at the time. I was helping him sell it and also advertising it in my Bus Stop Tales.”
Powers headed up 4-Play Video when all this was happening.
“A lot of people think we were co-producers but we weren’t,” Powers clarified.
“But may he rest in peace. I do miss him. We were estranged to some extent during the years. The truth of the matter is we were doing separate things but I did my best to promote it.”
According to Powers, Bus Stop Tales saw 14 volumes during its run.
“Then the [HIV] testing came. What was I going to do? Pick someone up at a bus stop then go get a test and wait? The spontaneity wouldn’t be there.”
Then came The Nasty Bros. series which included first Gillis, then Randy West then Jake Steed and “a few honorary ones.”
During his run, Powers shot a lot of first timers which included Briana Banks who originally worked under the name Mirage. Others included Julia Bond, Lela Star, Sunset Thomas, Mia Smiles, Mimi Miyagi, Sunrise Adams and though he didn’t mention her by name, Jewel De’Nyle.
“I was distributing the series Up and Cummers with Randy [West] when he shot Jenna Jameson and I was out of town at the time. When he also shot Tera Patrick I was distributing under 4-Play.
“I shot so many girls. The new girls, Emily Austin- she’s on the rise; Jessa Rhodes, Ivy Winters…there were so many. To think I made over 850 movies; with four or five scenes per movie I was in, there were quite a few women.
“And in real life I’ve done three times that because I’ve whored around the world in 28 different countries.”
Powers remembers a time when he had sex with 14 different girls in one bath tub.
“I went through about 62 condoms,” he recalled.
“I love women,” Powers continued. “I love making movies. I love putting things together for people to see and documenting it. But now at 58 I don’t want to over work myself. I think six [girls] would be the most. I wouldn’t do more than that.”
Powers also hastened to add that he doesn’t take sexual enhancements, although a woman pinching his nipples does the trick.
“I tell the girls I’m with who needs Viagra when I’ve got my nipples.”
Rebecca Bardoux’s of the opinion that men taking “dick pills” are a lot more common than it used to be.
“I know when I was back working in the Nineties there was no such thing as that, and that’s why there were fewer men in the industry. Now people brag about it and everyone loves using them on the set. I think that’s why there’s so many guys in the industry. They can rely on that to get hard instead of doing it the old fashioned way.”
“The ways these guys fuck so hard and banging them [the female performers] with the vengeance, they’ve got this erection that’s like a sword,” Powers observed.
“They’re bludgeoning you away. I get remarks from the girls that I’m more gentler. Sometimes I can go harder, but there’s no way I can use mine like that especially when I’m not on anything; and, quite frankly, when I go too hard it’s not as exciting for me and I don’t like doing that.
“I do cardiao every day for about an hour and a half,” Power explains. “So I can go for a long time but I don’t like that.”
As a result of the Viagra, Bardoux commented that on Twitter she often sees how the new girls comment about their pussies and asses hurting.
“My pussy and my ass were never sore,” Bardoux declared.
“I did two scenes a day, six days a week. My ass was never sore after an anal scene. My pussy was never sore.”
Because he might not get a girl the first time around, Powers says he’s getting some of these girls who are complaining about being sore.
“When they say to a guy who is barely six-inches you know it’s from somebody really rubbing them the wrong way and I do get that.
“Sometimes if I don’t get to shoot the girls first, I want to get a debut of something she’s not done before to make her still a Dirty Debutante. But I get the girls who like first time anal better than their pussy because they’re so sore.”
Another series Powers did was titled Cockless where he operated behind the camera.
“It was a different kind of girl-girl movie; I did 28 of them and Charlie Laine was under contract with me.”
Another girl who worked for Powers in that series was Cherry Rain who went on to marry Paul Fishbein, former owner of AVN.
“I liked to pick girls who had never done it before, experimenting with girls who had never done it before,” Powers continued.
“There were real orgasms, and there was a real shy approach. I would always suggest do what feels good to you. I think the best way to know how to please a woman, especially vaginally, is to watch her masturbate and watch how she touches herself.”
Powers intends to resurrect The Cockless series.
Bardoux asked Powers what brought him into the business. Powers explains that he was a peace officer in New York City.
“I wasn’t a cop per se but I had peace officer status,” he explained.
Powers worked in a 152 acre city within Brooklyn that had its own power plants, schools, synagogue and church.
“It was city streets on private lands so they had to deputize all of us. We weren’t security guards. We were peace officers.
“I was young and married in the Seventies, and I eventually got divorced and ended up on 42nd Street. These two guys were coming out of an office [at Show World]. I walked up to them, and said I think I can make your place safer. They looked at me and go someone’s been stealing from our place. If you can found out who it is we’ll give you a job. You find out who did that and we’ll talk.
“I did. I flushed out the guy. There were two guys working hand in hand stealing things internally out of Show World. I got hired. I was going through a divorce and I ended up managing the floor.
“A couple of times I threw myself into a live sex show or two. About the same time Joey Silvera was doing shows. That’s what I was doing until I came out to LA in 1982. I found myself at a Sizzler, and who do I bump into but John Holmes. That was crazy.”
Powers later got a wrong number in an attempt to call Hot Times a now defunct magazine.
“The wrong number was Bill Margold. I ended up meeting him, and he gave me a little advice. He likes to say I’m one of his kids.”
Powers then went to work selling movies for Fred Hirsch, Steve Hirsch’s father.
“There was a company called 4-Play that liked my style because we were selling their movies,” Powers went on to say.
“They hired me straight on. A man named Dave Arthur [Kirdy Stevens] said to me why would you go to work for them. I said I like underdogs and 4-Play was kind of an underdog. When I went with them they were just finishing Loose Ends with Erica Boyer and Janey Robbins. Harry Reems was also in that one. I eventually took over the company. I had the idea to do my own schtick, and that’s how seeds are planted.”