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Marilyn Chambers Celebrates a Birthday

Born Marilyn Ann Briggs, April 22, 1952, in Providence, Rhode Island, Marilyn Chambers, is one of the first female porn performers to shave her pubic hair.

Chambers is perhaps best known for Behind the Green Door and being in front of Chuck Traynor’s clenched fist. At least those are the stories. Chambers on a KSEX interview years ago, said “Door” took six weeks to make at a cost of $50,000. It was apparently shot on 16 mm and blown up to 35mm.

“It’s like looking through a peephole and watching what you’re not supposed to,” said Chambers at the time.

Chamber’s father was in advertising and discouraged any notion his daughter had about professional modeling. Odd since his occupation was one that constantly sucked young, gullible women into the sleazy vortex of that occupation.

While she got jobs with biggies like Pepsi and Clairol, Chambers at 17, landed a job that would grant her eternal infamy. When Ivory Snow was casting for a fresh faced woman to appear on its product, Chambers got the nod to be a mother holding a baby, although porn rumors being what they are, came up with a version that Chambers had been the baby. Others said she had had the baby while doing the boxcover.

Other variations of the tale have suggested that Brooke Shields had been the baby. Which would have been quite a trick since Shields would have been about 4 at the time.

Chambers managed a small part as Robert Klein’s girlfriend in the Barbra Streisand movie The Owl and The Pussycat. Beyond that she appeared nude in a long since forgotten hippie flick titled Together which happened to be Wes “Nightmare on Elm Street” Craven’s practice film before Last House on the Left which cast future adult film director Fred Lincoln as the demented psycho, Fred ‘Weasel’ Podowski.

Depressed that Hollywood wasn’t knocking at her door, Chambers tried her luck in San Francisco much like a Chinese railroad worker in the 1800’s trying the same thing.

Chambers held down several jobs- one as a topless model, the other as a bottomless dancer. Then it dawned on her she could combine the two elements and become a fully naked dancer/model.

About this time Chambers engaged in the first of several to-fail marriages. An advertisement for a casting call brought her to the door of The Mitchell Brothers.

Chambers didn’t realize it was for a porno film, but the Mitchell’s liked the salacious fact that Chambers resembled Cybill Shepherd, who was obviously not available for this kind of work, though Cybil did alright getting naked showing off her ass in The Last Picture Show.

With some degree of haggling, Chambers agreed to $25,000 and a percentage of the gross which would eventually make her a millionaire. Meanwhile Procter & Gamble made the porno connection after the film came out, which wasn’t too hard since Chambers was the one who dropped the bombshell in the first place.

Chambers’ double life now discovered, and P&G now embarrassed, put language in their future contracts to ward off such potential incidents. In tribute, Chambers supposedly put a box of Ivory Snow in each of her films only for her to discover them with a quizzical look on her face.

In Green Door, Chambers has sex with Johnny Keyes- another shockeroo for those unaccustomed to interracial hookups. Chambers reportedly fainted at the end of one scene. Another report is that Chambers’ parents refused to talk to her for several years after the film’s release, but eventually reconciled with her.

Chambers, along with the Mitchells, made several follow-up pictures which were instant hits, including films such as “The Resurrection of Eve”, “Insatiable”, “Insatiable II”, “Up ‘n Coming” and “Marilyn Chambers’ Private Fantasies”.

It’s also been said that Chambers was capable of swallowing John Holmes right down to the hilt, her nose to his balls. Whether true or not, it’s a fact that could have been inopportune for another story that Holmes often kept a pound of Velveeta in his shorts for company during those rare moments aware from sex.

Perhaps or perhaps not over the fact that Chambers could suck the evergreen off a tree, she landed a part in David Cronenberg’s Rabid which was produced by Ivan Reitman.

Although she rarely gets credit as the mainstream crossover pioneer that she is, Chambers has appeared in many theater productions, such as Neil Simon’s “Last of the Red Hot Lovers” and has also received the keys to the city from the mayors of Las Vegas and San Francisco. To her credit, most porn stars would have stolen them.

Upon returning to the O’Farrell Theater on July 28, 1999, “Marilyn Chambers Day” was declared in San Francisco by Mayor “Sweet” Willie Brown once a target of an FBI investigation regarding a fake fish company.

In her career, Chambers also fronted her own country-western band for a time, playing nightclub dates across the country. She sang the title song to “Insatiable” and also had a disco single, “Benihana” which is about a young couple sharing a romantic steak teriyaki dinner in a Japanese restaurant.

On TV, Marilyn starred in the soap opera, “Love ya Florence Nightengale” for 28 episodes on the Playboy Channel. She also got involved in a cable television venture, “MC-TV”, where she hosted and produced her own talk show.

Countless TV and radio talk show appearances also in her resume, Chambers has written two books, one being, “Marilyn Chambers: My Story”; the other, “Xaviera Meets Marilyn Chambers” (co-authored with Xaviera Hollander), the film version of which appeared on a twin bill with King Kong vs. Godzilla.

In 1999 Chambers made a brief comeback in adult with “Still Insatiable”, followed by “Dark Chambers” and “Edge Play” before retiring again. She also appears in R-rated specials that air regularly on HBO, Showtime and Cinemax. And just recently, Chambers worked in “Solitaire,” a low budget independent production filmed in her hometown of Providence in which she plays a cop who puts a red Ten on a Black Jack.


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