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Conversations with Director Lee Roy Myers

Like an alien from another planet, director Lee Roy Myers came to earth, landed in San Fernando Valley and soon began making the Porn Parody business his own.

No one really knew who Myers was, but he gained quick acceptance into porn society and suddenly emerged as one of the top go-to guys for the reinvented parody genre.

With that kind of real life story in play, I’d figure Myers for at least a porn spin of the Invasion of the Body Snatchers. Close, but no space ship. Though Myers comes pretty near, having just put the wraps to “The Human Sexipede,” a take on the cult horror hit, “The Human Centipede”.

The original, a Dutch film directed by Tom Six, is about girls who get surgically connected, ass-to-mouth, into a chain of humans with a single digestive system. Family entertainment through and through, you might say. Bring back the drive-ins.

Myers’ project, in tandem with Tom Byron’s company, has gotten a lot of mainstream play in recent weeks from websites devoted to the truly weird.

“Crazy, huh?” laughs Myers acknowledging the attention.

“We picked the project because we figured it was nuts enough that people would say, ‘look at the crazy people in pornography!’”

In all of this gee-whiz and hoo-ha, one’s likely to forget an even earlier announcement Myers put out that he was leaving New Sensations. Lest one be looking for knife fights, ego collisions, the ever popular citing of creative differences, or tabloid confessions that Myers had become world-weary from making parodies prompting his decision to leave, Myers claims it wasn’t that way at all.

“I like doing parodies,” states Myers flatly in rebuttal.

“And I owe a lot to New Sensations. I’m very grateful for what they did for me. But I really feel like I needed to try new things, different projects like The Human Sexipede, something that wouldn’t necessarily fly at New Sensations.”

One thing’s for certain. Myers won’t have much time to bum around, cultivate the five o’clock shadow he’s known for and reside on his laurels.

He’s got his own studio Nightingale Pictures to think about plus a line called Lee Roy Myers Presents [look for a parody of Tron]. This, aside from other deals in the works with Tom Byron Pictures.

Besides several “romance movies” on the drawing board, Myers is also breaking into the Gonzo arena with features good to go. Looks like Mr. Porn Parody is diversifying.

Myers also mentions one other piece of unfinished business: the re-make of Sex World. It’s something he’s been wanting to tackle for a long time. To which I say, go for it, because the original movie wasn’t all that awe inspiring, anyway.

Now that Myers has a more practical, business way of looking at all of this new independence, he believes that a producer and director in the adult industry should own some of their own product.

“Because we don’t know what the future of adult is, I want to make sure that some of my babies, some of the things that I really put all of my heart into, I’ll be able to say in ten years that’s still my movie. So that was a big part of it, also.”

Like the alien with mysterious origins alluded to earlier, Myers would just as soon not go into the specifics of his professional life before porn, save to say, he worked with a lot of sketch comics and produced stand-up comedy specials and TV pilots.

“How do you get into something like that?” he’s asked. “You don’t take that up in school.”

“No you don’t,” he concedes.

“It was a long path traveled. I was doing a lot of production, and while I was in film school, I shot a lot of softcore content and some solo content.”

At one point, Myers, while in film school, owned something like 25 websites.

“Make any money?”

“No,” he laughs. “Though everything I do, I try to go out on a limb whenever I can.”

A great way of making the acquaintance of squirrels, if not fellow unemployed risk takers.

Myers recalls how he got his start on the ‘Net, by encountering the “it’s mine- I’m not going to show you how to do it” mentality one often sees in webmasters who behave as though they hold the key to the universe and all its arcane secrets. And so, Myers learned on his own and, thus, made mistakes.

“I took a chance and lost my shirt and a couple pairs of pants in the deal,” he laughs. “I learned a lot.”

Myers also learned a lot about producing. After serving a few internships, that experience whet his appetite for licensing and acquisitions. As a film school graduate, Myers never had what you might call a passionate project, so to speak, but his subsequent dealings in pay-per-view and video-on-demand acquisitions gave him a lot of contact with the adult industry because he bought adult movies for a large Canadian Telecom outfit.

That’s all Myers did for two years was watch porn. By his estimation it took up about 90% of his time during which he saw about 99% of the movies out there.

“I watched thousands of everyone’s movies.”

Myers drew several conclusions during this stint, as he monitored the trend of sales in the industry.

“People now want to see the girl next door,” he concludes.

“And people want to see something that’s going to get them over the hump of buying their first adult movie. So we’re talking about product that appeals to the mainstream market not just the typical porn buyer.

“Parodies and celebrity sex tapes do well because people read about them and know they’re safe. They’re successful because they’re not just for typical porn buyers. I saw that happening. I also saw that producers also stopped spending money on making porn, and it showed.

“My thought was there was a market for people to step it up a notch and make things look a little bit better especially with technology being where it is.”

With everyone and his mother now doing parodies in a dog-eat-dog competition, Myers feels, besides knowing what’s selling, it’s just as important than ever to stay ahead of the curve and know what’s going on in the industry and who’s doing what.

“But it’s easy to announce a project and much harder to sell it,” he reflects.

Eventually Myers would hook up with Scott Taylor, head of New Sensations. They became friends and discussed what Myers might bring to the table.

“He asked me if I would write ‘The Office,’ ” Myers recalls.

“At first it wasn’t going to be a parody, it was more a comedy about a porn office; and it just evolved into being a parody of The Office.”

It was when Myers began doing the porn take of The Big Lebowski for New Sensations that he struck up a relationship with its star, Tom Byron.

“We got along really well. I think he was impressed with our crew and the product we made. And I was really impressed with his dedication to the project. Because everybody was still doing gonzo, people weren’t used to long days. So it was really a nice treat working with a guy who was there for six, almost 20-hour days and was still smiling and still on his A-game when we finished.”

The Big Lebowski parody is probably Myers’ favorite, not to short change The Human Sexipede which Myers feels hits it square on the nose.

“With The Big Lebowski I thought you might be biting off more than you could chew,” I tell Myers.

“I think it’s probably the best thing I’ve ever done,” he replies. “I’m very happy with it.”

Besides it giving him a few days off to take a breather and see where he was positioned, industry-wise, when Myers left New Sensations, it was with the idea that he’d only take jobs he was really passionate about and would have a good time at.

Likewise, he wanted to be able to continue working with friends. When Byron sent him a text wondering if they might work together again, Myers didn’t have to think twice.

“He’s amazing- not only is he a nice guy, but he’s still a great performer, sexually, and a great actor,” offers Myers.

“I like him genuinely and consider him a friend.”

Myers then came up with the idea for Sexipede, feeling that it would certainly grab a lot of media attention.

“It was something that had been on the back of my mind since the original movie came out,” he says.

According to Myers, Byron embraced the idea from the moment it was brought up. The question remains, will it have enough commercial appeal? Myers certainly hopes so.

“I compare it to when I did The Golden Girls,” he says.

“I got a lot of ugh, gross. So I hope it’s the same appeal. We didn’t copy the Human Centipede so much as it’s a parody of horror movies and porno in general.”

[Besides Byron, the cast includes Sunny Lane, Amber Rayne and Danica Dillan.]

“We make fun of everything while doing a tribute to all of it,” Myers continues.

“I think people will watch it. I know the script’s been posted online and I’ve gotten a lot of emails about how people can’t wait to see it. I think it’s going to be the surprise hit of the year. It is what it aspires to be. It’s both sexy and silly and we added a little creepiness to it.”

Myers will collaborate with Byron, again, in a porn version of Pinocchio.

“It’s a very funny storyline,” he says.

When the talk gets around to sci-fi/horror homages and other cherished examples of drive-in schlock, one can’t discount the contributions director Jonathan Morgan’s made to that genre particularly with Camp Cuddly Pines Powertool Massacre and Bride of Double Feature.

As a kid, Myers was raised on the same kind of diet, loves the drive-in culture and anything to do with B-movies. Myers agrees wholeheartedly about the Morgan assessment and also tosses Joanna Angel’s name into the ring of porn directors who’ve done the tribute business proud. Myers is also an ardent fan of the late Bosommeister Russ Meyer.

“His stuff is probably my favorite,” concludes Myers.

“He’s inspired me to try something different while showing your passion on your sleeve.”

So it’s not surprising that among Myer’s upcoming projects, he finds room to include Meyer’s fast cars and tough broads horse opera, Faster, Pussycat! Kill! Kill! for his own girl-girl studio, Nightingale Pictures.

Gee, maybe Tera Patrick will get to play the Tura Satana role after all, thus fulfilling all those crazy Internet prophesies that begin with a casual mention in Liz Smith’s column two years ago.

[Wasn’t Quentin Tarantino supposed to be directing that version?]

With or without Patrick, [most assuredly without], it looks as though Myers beats Tarantino in the drag race to the trough with this one.


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