Thursday, October 8, 2009

Pirates, the Best Selling Pornographic Movie ever made.

Pirates, the 2005 XXX rated pornographic film broke records, its budget was an unheard of $1 million plus and swept through the AVN, XRCO and Adult DVD Empire awards. Also, in a time when pornographic film sales are suffering hugely due to the free market of the Internet Pirates made bank.

It also played at several small, but mainstream film festivals in a push to appeal to a wider audience.

Taking advantage of the pirate craze that had swept the world in the wake of Disney's Pirates of the Caribbean and getting plenty of publicity about its production, both good and bad-

Several scenes were shot on board a replica of the HMS Bounty in St. Petersburg, Florida. The owners of the ship were not aware of the true nature of the film as they were advised that the film being made was a "Disney-type pirate film for families.
The adult film was groundbreaking for the genre, and has proven that a high budget pornographic film can be lucrative enough to sustain itself and indeed, has justified a sequel.
Which like the first film, is already getting plenty of press for scandals its justified.

I'm not going to pretend to be an expert on pornography or that part of the business, but what I do think this is a compelling argument about new and old media models. The pornography industry is suffering because it's most simple content, videos of people having sex, can be easily accessed for free. This is at least one example of showing how adding story and greater value in the form of storytelling, has transcended the major hurdle facing any pornographic film coming out. People pay for story, people care about story (even when acted by porn stars) and they'll come back again if they enjoyed it the first time.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I AM going to pretend to be an expert on pornography. Just pretend, of course.

I don't think it's "story" that is driving the success of the Pirates franchise, but rather spectacle.

Joone, the director of the films, had his first commercial success in the adult biz with Virtual Sex with Jenna Jameson, a title which completely abandoned plot for a new semi-interactive DVD experience-thingie...where the viewer could instantly switch positions, costumes or preferred moaning styles while "having" P.O.V. sex with the undisputed biggest star in the business.

The adoption of much higher than industry norm technology and talent was what was paying off...but there was still a critical part missing pivotal to the even higher profits of Joone's later success.

The "Virtual Sex with" series was still creepy masturbation bait where one totally controlled a woman with a remote control as she was pounded with a disembodied cock. It screamed "alone."

Like so much of porn, it was missing half of it's potential audience. This would change with the Island Fever series. Like Pirates immediately after it, Island Fever added the ingredients of High Definition cameras and Tropical shoot locations to the base formula of cutting edge technology and spectacle.

The series still lacked any plot, story, or even dialogue, but it made a shitload of money targeting and succeeding in the "Couples Porn" niche.

By spending enough money to film somewhere other than a white van with tinted windows or a basement in Burbank...Joone was banking on the hope that maybe he could get women to watch this stuff. Or, more likely, get guys feeling it's ok to say "hey honey, maybe we can check this one out..."

Now, I'm sure there's plenty of couples that are perfectly aware their partner watches porn...but based on the sheer number of letters to Dear Abbey each week, it would seem there's still a sizeable "mainstream" majority that does not.

That's what spectacle does...lend enough of an air of crediblity to a production to let it court the mainstream...the logic something like "I'm not cheap if I'm watching something expensive"...and happily as a result, couple which haven't touched each other in ages can finally get it on...because there's a 19-year-old blonde in the background