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Porn Filmed at Ball State- Except This Time It Wasn’t Shane’s World

MUNCIE, Indiana — A local film director has aspirations to turn Muncie into a Midwest mecca for the adult entertainment industry.

And he’s started by directing one of his first adult films on property owned by Ball State University.

Vampire Diaries was released last Friday on DVD by Glass Ceiling Studios. Muncie film director Christopher Gregory said he shot the entire X-rated film on the grounds of the Kitselman Center, home to Ball State University’s Virginia Ball Center for Creative Inquiry.

Gregory said he recruited about five Ball State students as part of Vampire Diaries’ cast. The film’s plotline follows Dracula’s daughter as she makes an appearance in the 21st century as a 23-year-old college student exploring her sexuality.

When scouting for a local place to film, Gregory said he contacted Virginia Ball Center director Joe Trimmer and received permission to film inside the Kitselman Center in August 2004, according to the location agreement signed by both Trimmer and Gregory.

Trimmer, however, was unaware the film would be pornographic.

“We would have never signed a location release had we known this would be the content,” said Trimmer, who was unaware of the adult film’s release until notified by The Star Press on Wednesday. “That was not the film that was depicted to us.”

According to details of the location agreement, the Kitselman Center gave Gregory, a Delta High School graduate, permission to shoot scenes for what he pitched to the university in 2004 as a horror movie tentatively titled Night Scream.

Trimmer also asked for a copy of Gregory’s résumé, which listed previous work such as directing episodes of MTV’s The Real World and developing a children’s TV series for PBS.

The weekend Gregory shot his film at the Kitselman Center, Trimmer recalls little activity going on inside the building. “I usually come in on weekends to work, and I don’t remember seeing any film crew here,” he said. “Which I suppose implies they were filming at night.”

In fact, a coffin was the only prop Trimmer saw that indicated a horror film was being made inside the mansion off University Avenue. “That was the last I heard of this (film) until now,” Trimmer told The Star Press on Wednesday.

When he signed the location disclosure, Gregory acknowledges he never told Trimmer the film was a “horror porn” flick — a genre then new to the director but one he’s since capitalized on via his latest production company, Midnite Films.

The company’s most successful release, Blood Lake, came out in October 2006 and has since grossed $2 million in sales, the director claims.

Vampire Diaries was not presented to Ball State as an adult film, because making it pornographic “was a last-minute decision,” Gregory said. “From a director’s point of view, I don’t believe a filmmaker should be reined in creatively.”

Gregory said he believes Ball State does not have any grounds to pursue legal action against his production company. “We had a right to shoot on location there, and we’ve not shown anything in the film that would identify it as being Ball State,” he said. “We took every precaution with that. So unless you knew the interior of the Kitselman Center, you’d have no idea. A chair, after all, is a chair.”

But another Hoosier filmmaker who’s shot a movie at Ball State said if Gregory was making a pornographic film on university grounds, that fact should have been disclosed.

“There is a definite stigma associated with pornography and the location must be informed that this is an arena they are entering,” said Zack Parker, who shot most of his first feature-length horror movie, INEXCHANGE, inside his old Ball State dormitory in 2001.

Parker said the owner of a film location should have the right to view the script of a film being shot there, in addition to seeing examples of the filmmaker’s previous work. “But, if the location does not ask for these things, they should be prepared to face the possibility that the content of the film may not be in line with their own tastes,” he said.

Parker said he went through a lengthy process with the university to receive permission to shoot his film there.

“I had to sit down with many different department heads, had to submit a final draft of the script and was even asked to provide a copy of my last film,” he explained.

Trimmer said use of the Kitselman Center is reserved almost exclusively for students participating in Virginia Ball Center seminars. In the past, occasional requests have been granted to Ball State students, faculty and local residents wanting to book an event at the facility, he noted.

In this case, Trimmer said, Gregory “pulled a fast one on us. He was pretty slick about the whole thing, in retrospect.”

Gregory said he knew word would eventually get out about Vampire Diaries filming on Ball State property.

But he’s prepared for the backlash much in the way he’s prepared to bring Muncie to the center stage of L.A’s adult entertainment industry.

“All the big companies in the industry are pushing producers and directors to find the next big star in the Midwest,” Gregory said. “And it’s a lot more than just my company wanting to bring business here.”

Currently, Gregory said Midnite Films has an office in Los Angeles and is scouting for a production house to locate here in Muncie. He said he’s working on a mainstream horror movie, The Kentucky Fried Horror Show, but has aspirations to make another adult horror flick to be shot partially in Muncie, possibly about werewolves.

In 2004, Gregory told The Star Press he was working on a monster movie, King Tori, but the film was never released, nor was a previous comedic film he told The Star Press he was working on in 2000, titled Baggers.

Nowadays, Gregory has found a niche in an industry he said he’s proud to be affiliated with.

“I’m not ashamed of what I do,” said the adult film director, who has also penned a book titled How to Break Into the Porn Industry. “Porn today is more mainstream than it’s ever been. People who think it’s evil are naive.”

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