"In a society that is drug-infested, violence-racked and polluted by chemical greed, no one has ever died from an overdose of pornography." (Bill Margold)Veteran pornographer William Margold became famous to the reading public through two 1990s books by the late UCLA psychiatrist Robert Stoller, Porn and Coming Attractions.
"Opium to an addict it was, telling Bill that someone at a university wanted to hear him talk about his work," wrote Stoller about his invitation to Bill to educate about him porn. "Since his goal in life is immortality - he saw me as an opportunity. He was right.
"William Margold is profoundly self-centered and an endless talker."
Bill likes to be called "Papa Bear" which suits his personality. He's alternately cuddly or prickly, depending on his mood.
He keeps dozens of teddies in his Hollywood apartment that troubled souls may hug. Bill's favorite, Bearson Stubbs, usually receives the producer's credit when he directs.
"Whenever I'm interviewing someone who wants to get into porn," says Margold, "I always ask them, "Do you have anybody that you will hurt by doing this?" It would be ideal if someone had no relationships - disenfranchised human being devoid of any past that would haunt them and any kind of present or future they could destroy. If it's a man, he also better be single because, unless he's married to the most magnanimous of women, it will tear her insides out.
"There's even more of a stigma for a woman. She'll be called a prostitute and a whore and thought of as sleazy, cheap and slutty. What she does now will haunt her for the rest of her life.
"I discourage people from getting into porn because you have to have a deathwish to succeed at it. Pornography gets into your blood and you can never get away from it."
With Jim Holliday and Ron Jeremy, Bill knows virtually everyone who've acted on this "deathwish."
"In the body of X, Holliday and I are the twin spines," says Margold. "He's the historian and I'm the practitioner. I can talk about what Holliday writes about because I've lived the history that Holliday has recorded. As a team we're unbeatable."
Holliday rented an apartment next to Margold during the 1980s and they'd talk late into the night about how they were going to make each other famous.
Bill and Jim formed the X-Rated Critics Organization (XRCO) in 1984. Holliday inducted Bill into the Hall of Fame in 1989. Then in mid-1991, after a misunderstanding, Margold stopped talking to Holliday until inducting him into the XRCO Hall of Fame in February of 1995. The two pornographers thrive on animosity.
Writes Stoller: "Bill, our pornographer-performer, is full of energy, continually concentrated on his work. His enthusiasms are in the service of a rebelliousness aimed originally at his mother, he feels, but turned onto society since his teens.
"Bill's deflected anger is why he works with the "kids" (performers) against the "parents" (producers, directors, distributors and outside society).
"His willingness to die for his cause - "f--- society" - makes him a menace when he denies that AIDS threatens him and colleagues." (Porn)
Because he refuses to get tested for HIV, Bill no longer performs sex on camera. He claims that the government invented AIDS to kill gays, blacks, drug users and other "undesirables".
Bill's father, Nathan Ross Margold seemed headed for the U.S. Supreme Court until the death of President Franklin Delano Roosevelt. Nathan served in the upper echelons of the NAACP which was founded by liberal Jews like himself, on the Federal Court in Washington D.C. and as an Assistant Secretary of the Interior.
Bill: "My father, a famous Jew, would have other famous people, mainly Jews, over for dinner. One night, my father, who had high blood pressure - only 44 years old - suffered a heart attack. At the moment, while the doctor beat on his chest, I staggered out of my room and came across the hall and watched my father die.
"I had a dream that night. My father was sick before I went to sleep, coughing and sweating. I had a dream about my father being cooked by cannibals in a large pot.
"My mother says I came downstairs the next morning and told her that she should have gone instead.
"My mother sent me when I was six to Black Foxe - a military school. I ran away.
"I hated boarding school so I lived with my mother for a while. She rarely saw me. I had a way of going to school on Monday morning and not coming home until Friday night. Mom would slap me around and call me a bastard. Once she threw me through a window... She put me in a boarding school where they kept me in a basement and dripped water on me."
Bill doesn't talk to his three daughters. The oldest one, born in 1965, was adopted. Liz, born in 1968, is the daughter of Penny, Bill's first wife. Juliette, the daughter of Bill's live-in from 1972-'80, Linda, got in touch with him in 1995 to ask why he worked in porn. Bill told her and says she was satisfied.
"My family is X," says Bill. "My kids are the performers. I don't have time for another family. Since 1990, I've had almost nothing to do with my two youngest daughters because I can't be the cuddly father figure they need. But they know that they can call me if they need me.
"In 1985, I decided to probe into my past. So I went to talk to my aunt - probably the brightest woman I have ever met in my life. I knocked on the door; I hadn't seen her for ten years and I haven't seen or heard from her since. She was in her 80s.
"She said, "What are you doing here?" I said, "I want to know if my mother is still alive?" She said "No." My mother died five years previously.
"My aunt and I had a four hour conversation. My family hates me, that I became the black sheep, that I didn't become an upstanding family member or upstanding member of society, that I scoffed at Juvenile Hall, that I scoffed at any kind of legitimate work, that I went off into the X-rated industry and sullied the Margold name.
"I told the old lady to call me if she ever wanted to see me again. She never called."
After graduating from college, Bill worked as a probation officer in Juvenile Hall and wrote part time for different newspapers starting in 1968 with the Santa Monica Evening Outlook. In 1972 he moved on to the adult paper - Hollywood Press. When he could find nothing to write about, Bill made up stories, including one about Carlos Tarbolina.
"In early 1972 I got a call from a man called Reb who owned a modeling agency called Sunset International. He called me all kinds of names and said I had not put his [porno] ad in the newspaper. I went down to defend the owner of the newspaper and walked into a small office and was confronted by a 220-pound Hells Angel type.
"I told him I'd write a story about him - the Lenny of Of Mice and Men. He mulled that over for a while and said "Ok, what the hell." So I wrote a nice story about him - "Reb's Rent-A-Chick Service."
Writing about the industry eventually led Bill to performing in it, and to working with Reb and his "Rent-A-Chick" service. Margold cast about half of all pornos made between 1973-82. When he left, Jim South's World Modeling Agency assumed the dominant position of talent broker. Margold's former boss, Reb Sawitz of Pretty Girl International, ranks second.
Determined to make himself famous, Bill created in 1976 Worth Mentioning Public Relations and gave its control to one of his alter -egos Lem Larry.
"Carlos Tobalina (AKA Troy Benny) offered me the chance to become the Publicity Director for his numerous endeavors, including his theaters, the Mayan (in Los Angeles) and the XI and XII (in Hollywood) and his distributing arm, Hollywood International Film Corporation of America."
Less than a week into his position, Bill got the assignment of coordinating Director Gerard Damiano's five day L.A. promo tour for The Story of Joanna.
"I suffer from cases of idol infatuation and continuously seek figures who can double as both friends and fathers. Since getting into the exploitation business, I've tried to have myself adopted by such warm people as Reb Sawitz, Carlos Tobalina, a garrulous coyote named Sam Menning and now Damiano."
Bill arranged for Gerard Damiano to spend two hours as a guest on Carole Hemingway's show on KABC Talk Radio.
"Carole, a redheaded pixie, didn't care for pornography, but Damiano, thanks to a number of foollish caller who tried to lambast him and wound up making fools of themselves and their side, impressed her.
"Carole thought it would be interesting if she contacted a guy who had made a G-rated film and she called Dallas, where she reached Joe Camp, producer-director of Benji.
"Jerry and Joe dueled over the merits of free expression and Jerry had nothing but praise for the doggie film while Camp admired Damiano's X-rated sexcapades."
Damiano also appeared on KTRH with radio host Lou Irwin - no fan of porn.
"When Irwin, who was sure he had won the day for morality, offered Jerry a sample of Clairol Herbal Essence shampoo, Jerry not only accepted it, but asked Irwin to autograph it which made Lou happy.
"In every interview, Jerry borrowed a line that I had used on a TV interview several weeks before. "No one ever died from an overdose of pornography." And every time he said it, he looked over at me and smiled."
The first person to appear on Wally George's TV show, Margold got ejected in all but one of his eight appearances. After Wally tore apart a teddy bear during their eighth debate, Bill refused to return.
Bill Margold vs. Larry Flynt
Bill Margold writes in the Hollywood Press 2/25/77.
Here's an excerpt of Bill's review in Hustler 8/75 of the book Married Whore, written by Jason Simmons and published by Chelsea Library Press.
Bill reviewed flicks for Velvet until deciding that he should stop writing about other people and let them write about him. In 1980 he ripped Three Ripening Cherries and Champagne Orgy.
In 1981, Margold married a porn performer named Drea, born around 1957. Unlike Bill, Drea could organize. She soon ran his life.
Margold described Drea as the "best piece of ass I've ever had. It's like f---ing myself. She's the best thing that's ever happened to me. You climb into something like her and you'll never forget it, because she loves to f---. She doesn't like to give head that much, but she loves sexual intercourse. She likes it doggy style, she likes to be pounded, she likes to be hurt in bed, and so she'll moan. She likes the violent aspects of sex - likes to live on a razor blade. I'm violent in sex because I'm clumsy and big and that combination hurts her and enhances our sex. She's only 27, but she has the mentality and abilities of a woman much older." (Adam 4/84)
After persuading Bill to fold his public relations business, Drea took control of Pretty Girl International and effectively ended Bill's most valuable role as porn's gatekeeper.
The couple made dozens of mediocre sex videos such as Hot Chocolate.
"Why does Margold produce such lousy movies?" asks critic Pat Riley. "He's stuck in a time warp...back at school, having a giggle with his classmates."
By the time Margold divorced Drea in 1984, his leading role in porn was over. She'd persuaded him to leave what he was good at - screening, promoting and developing talent - and he never recovered. In some ways, the industry hasn't either.
Since Bill's retirement from Pretty Girl, dozens of vulnerable women have poured through the offices of less concerned gatekeepers into the hands of such vicious guys as Paul Little and John Bone, getting chewed up and spat out by a business they don't understand.
Whatever importance Bill retains in the industry rests on his credibility with the media, performers and fans. With few needs beyond attention, he devotes himself to truth, justice and the Margold way.
His form of truth, however, should not be confused with the facts. If Bill needs a good story, he'll just make one up, and soon convince himself and unsuspecting listeners that it happened. On numerous occasions, Bill told me stories about such folks as John Stagliano and Jamie Gillis that turned out to not be true. Margold invented many of the stores he presented in the Hollywood Press as fact.
Though an unreliable historical source, he offers provocative insights into the psychology of porn.
"My truths are much more fascinating than any lies I could think up.
"I believe in predestination and that I was predestined to become what I am - the leading authority on the X-rated industry in the world.
"I'm in an antisocial, highly immoral, against-the-grain, ultra-rebellious form of entertainment. We're the last rebels of society.
"My whole reason for being in this industry is to satisfy the desire of the men in the world who don't much care for women and want to see the men in my Industry getting even with the women they couldn't have when they were growing up. The industry hates me for saying this, but I strongly believe it. Even the most satisfied Casanova-Don Juan-satyr has always wanted somebody he couldn't get, and because of that he harbors revenge. So we come on a woman's face or brutalize her sexually: we're getting even for their [the male viewers] lost dreams.
"When I've strangled a person or sodomized a person, or brutalized a person, the audience is cheering my action, and then when I've fulfilled my warped desire, the audience applauds.
"The women don't have to do much. They just lay there and get pronged... Some of the women are so worried now about the various diseases, that they stuff all kinds of sponges in themselves...which freeze the poor man's cock.
"I'd like to bring more violence into my creations...erotic terror: the stabbing in the shower in Psycho, the axe murder in Dementia 13. I'd like to show what men want to see: violence against women. The most violent we can get is a cumshot in the face. "
Dr. Stoller says that from infancy, we experience frustration and trauma from those we turn to for love and protection. The attempted resolution that most affects eroticism is revenge and the sense of righteousness that rationalizes cruelty. "Dehumanization is revenge, a triumphant act offered by men in most societies as proof of masculinity, an undoing of a sense of victimhood vis-a-vis the category of objects (for example, women) one desires.... We do this in two ways. Either we ignore our awareness that people are humanlike us and focus only on certain anatomic parts or on partial aspects of their personality, or we turn our backs on humans entirely and desire the nonhuman, such as a garment."
To get themselves up and off, persons create and polish daydreams, "private and published, conscious and unconscious. And they move these daydreams into the real world, finding partners for the action. For these scripts to work... one must deceive oneself. If not excitement, excitement is replaced by either anxiety or boredom. Excitement is a buzzing oscillation between... between the sense of danger and a sense of mastery leading to gratification. If the mastery comes without effort... it does not include excitement." (Observing the Erotic Imagination, p. 70-71.)
Bill: "The girl is an extension of my left hand... I have a lot of dead nerve endings in my lower back from football injuries. When I was in my prime as a performer, I was known as "Leather Dick" because I had no feeling in my cock. It would get up and stay hard and you could hang baby elephants from it and nothing would happen.
"In January, 1982, at the Las Vegas Consumer Electronics Show (CES), Seka paid me one of the ultimate compliments. She was holding court, signing pictures, and she spotted me across the room. We had not seen each other for a year...She pushed the people away, pointed across the room, and said, "That's Mr. Pornography."
"I don't have a lot of friends. I don't have the time. I'm egocentric - I need to be the center of attention at all times.
"I have much more affection for the New York Yankees and the Detroit Lions than I do for the people in my life, because the teams don't hurt me that often or that deeply.
"We porn people are masturbatory aids. There is no other reason for us to exist except for somebody to go home and jack off over us. We're not a learning aid. We don't teach anybody anything except how to fast-forward their VCR. So the delusion of grandeur that we have some kind of socially redeeming value as a learning aid is a crock. If anybody tries to screw the way people are screwed on camera, they'll rip out every muscle in their back and in their legs. We get into positions that monkeys are envious of, because the camera has to see what we're doing.
"They say the Mafia exist in our business...probably in the distribution end. I've never met any.
"The business is inherently unscrupulous. Why should I trust these people I'm dealing with? Why do I want to bother with somebody else's money? Let them deal with it and find out that these people aren't the nicest people in the world.
"The people in the Industry are in it because they were repressed as kids. They grew up in straight families; they're not from the broken homes, battered children. I married a girl from a middle class upbringing. Drea. She started screwing around when she was 12.
"She came to me with kinds of delusions of grandeur about what she had done. Drea is a liar. She is a normal person who doesn't want to be any more normal than I do."
Dr. Robert Stoller gained entrance to Porn Valley through Bill who became the main personality in Stoller's books Porn and Coming Attractions.
"In 1985 someone told me to contact Robert Stoller at UCLA. He knew nothing about adult entertainment. He wanted to be taught and so I became his rabbi (teacher).
"We adopted each other. He was fascinated that I told the truth. I made no attempt to cover up. I was not going to hide behind the cloak of anonymity. Over six years, we spent over 200 hours in interviews.
"He told me that I was pretty good at interviewing people but that he was better. And he was.
"I watched him dissect people and I thought that he'd never be able to do that to me. And then after Viper [the love of Bill's life] left, he brought me down and I cried in his office for a couple of hours and felt better.
"I miss Stoller. It took me three years to get over Viper leaving (in May, 1991) and I think that I would've gotten over her faster if Stoller had been around for me to use as a sounding board.
"It's difficult for me to find someone as good as me who's a good listener. I tend to teach and he was a good teacher, and so we taught each other."
Stoller died in a car crash in the summer of 1991 when hit by a speeding teenager. Margold says the doctor's psychological counseling changed him for the better.
Bill wishes that the love of his life, Viper, a porn actress and methamphetamines addict, also would've availed herself of Dr. Stoller's help.
Born 9/12/60, Viper lived with Bill from 1986 to 1991 when she disappeared. Bill suspects she wanted to stop being Viper the porn star and return to being Stephanie, (her real name). After receiving birthday and Christmas cards from her (she knew he hated those occasions) in the first year after her departure, he hasn't heard from her. Bill won't try to find her.
"Someone like Viper only comes around once a lifetime," says Margold. "I know many people feel fortunate to have known me. But there are few people that I feel fortunate to have known. Viper is one of them. Of all the people I've met, she had the most impact on my life.
"For the first time, I discovered vulnerability and that made me whole. I was unaware that I had a heart until Viper broke it.
"If I had not known that pain, I don't think that I'd be as willing to give back to the industry and understand their pain. For to understand pain, you've got to get hurt."
Margold describes the porn industry as a "playpen for the damned." His friend Jim Holliday calls it "rest for the restless."
"Many people have a misconception of the horrible things we do. Women volunteer to do this and get paid well. Our industry is a Garden of Eden surrounded by the poisonous Love Canal. But first you have to swim through the poison [society's vicious view of porn].
"Our industry is familial. The kids watch out for themselves and for each other. The industry has many close friendships. We're insulated from the outside world which doesn't care for us."
Dr. Robert Stoller: "Bill brings an additional dimension - parody - to his work. Inside his pornography is his hatred of pornography: of pornographers (including himself), performers, customers, as well as the forces arrayed against pornography. He loves the idea that the left - the reformers - join the right - the enforcers - to kill porn, for he reads their behavior as proving that they are fools for not seeing the foolishness of porn, and for seeing it as more vicious than he does. To him, they overrate the tumescent cock." (Porn p. 219)
Margold didn't pursue the performing part of the biz as much as many thought he should.
"I was good at it. I could get off on cue. But I was much more concerned about doing everything rather than just one thing."
In Intimate Lessons, the Renaissance man of X has sex with two cooked chickens. "I had gotten off twice in an orgy scene and, having nothing better to do, I noticed these two cooked chickens sitting on the table. They were small and interesting looking. I wanted to see if my dick could fit. So I shoved it in there, f---ed it, ripped it apart, and threw it on the ground. But when I did it to the second one, a bone broke and went into my hand. So I yowled piteously. Later, I picked up a Polish sausage and beat my cock with it, saying "Bad dick, bad dick, look what you've done," pointing at the f---ed chickens.
"I have answers for everything. I speak with a soundbite mentality. I will not waste your time. I'm going to tell you the truth as fast as I can because I know that I only have a limited amount of time to talk.
"You start with me, go to the rest of the industry, and then come back to me.
"My comments are your chapter headings.
"I don't want to take anything. Am I charging you for this interview? No. I just want to give to the business [of porn].
"I've had a wonderful time in this industry and I'm waiting for the right person to come along who's smart enough to market me. I am a commodity. I can be offered to the world as the great teacher of the X-rated industry.
"I have the most fun going to classes. I love to teach. I'd like to give a certified college class called "The ABCs of X." I'd bring in guests each week, show X-rated films, and dissect what makes them tick.
"I also look upon myself as the St. Francis of Assisi of X, taking care of all the dumb animals - the performers and the fans. They are my children. Somebody has to take care of them and nobody else wants to. And so I accept them all into this melting pot called "The Cave" [Bill's apartment]. If a person is in need of a crash pad, they're welcome to use this place, so long as they don't bring narcotics in. I hate drugs.
"I want my new project PAW (Protecting Adult Welfare) to be my version of Synanon (a halfway house for heroin addicts), except make it S-i-n instead of S-y-n, a-n-o-n.
"If adult performers are abused or beaten or having problems, let them crash at my Sinanon where the only rule is no dope."
Bill prefers Porn to Stoller's other book on the industry Coming Attractions which was finished after Stoller's death by pornographer Ira Levine, better known in the industry as S&M specialist Ernest Greene who is married to ex-porn star Jane Hamilton.
"Ira and I clashed over the AIDS scare. Ira, with all his piety, began yowling that everyone was about to die and that the sky was falling. He became the proverbial Chicken Little.
"I told him that this is an industry based on walking on a tightrope with razor blades underneath. Don't try to put a safety net under there.
"He questioned how I could take my kids cavalierly. They take themselves cavalierly. I am not going to protect them by tying them up in fear. Fear is the great killer not fat. I am not going to live in mortal fear of AIDS."
Stoller: "Like Ira, Bill is fired up by rebellion; protected by a mordant sense of humor; blessed with keen intelligence; amused by his own wry exhibitionism - of the mind, not of the flesh; seduced into eternal wariness; energized by hyperbole; both consoled and battered by too much skill in avoiding long-lasting love; and on the razor's edge of self-destructiveness: f--- it, f--- them, f--- you, f--- me.
"But he and Ira handle the politics of culture and of soul differently. Bill grandly denies caring about what happens to anyone in the universe except "the kids," the performers he protects. Ira is unendingly concerned with good and evil. They also express sharply different aesthetic sensibilities of how porn should look and feel: Bill likes junior horse-around; Ira would create erotic art if he were funded." (Coming Attractions, p. 15)
Margold: "What will damage someone in the business more than AIDS is the indelibility of the pictures. I just spoke to a person today who wants to get into the business. She's convinced that her parents will tolerate her even though they don't know what she's doing. She may get a rude awakening that this stuff is forever, and while parents are supposed to be magnanimous, adoring and all-forgiving, they may damn her to perdition for doing this, even though it may be no more than what they wanted to do when they were kids. But now they've grown up and become calcified assholes."
Bill belongs to the board of the Free Speech Coalition (FSC) which evolved from the Adult Video Association of America.
"I'm the most antiestablishment person in the history of the business suddenly on the board of directors of the establishment."
Margold created Free Speech 2 in 1994 after Savannah's suicide. He opened up 1-800 lines for performers feeling distressed to call in and talk over their problems. Free Speech 2 turned into PAW (Protecting Adult Welfare) in 1995.
Margold spends much of his time giving counsel. "I make nothing from my work with Free Speech or PAW. What I do make is peace of mind with myself. And there's no price tag on that. I'm giving back everything that was given to me. I want to make this a business for the performers and the fans that can go on to the next century."
Each of the major female porn suicides - Shauna Grant (1984), Megan Leigh (1990), Savannah (1994), Alex Jordan (1995) - "rings the bell louder.
"I discovered Alex Jordan and gave her her name. She lived next door for a while. I helped make her famous. She was my first kid to die.
"Unless there's another crisis, people aren't going to reach out. Right now there's tranquillity in the business aside from the oppressiveness from the outside.
"I can't stand the hypocrisy of the outside world which jacks off with the left hand and pushes us away with the right.
"I would like the opportunity to meet with each person coming into the industry because if I did, 90% would not come into the business.
"I would say to them: "What are you going to do ten years from now when your kid brings home a magazine with you laying in the middle with a candle shoved up your ass? Are you going to tell him that you're playing the part of the birthday cake?"
"That tends to scare a lot of people away.
"I do the interview with a benign viciousness because I want to keep people out of this business who are going to get trampled.
"Persons should perform for the adulation of the masses. It's the only good reason to do this. Money and sex are not good reasons because you don't get enough of either.
"I discovered Seka in 1978. When I asked her why she wanted to do porn, she said "Fame." I told her that's the best reason."
Even though Bill won't take an AIDS test, and hence no longer performs, he doesn't oppose the industry practice of regularly testing because he believes it brings his kids peace of mind.
*In January 1993, Las Vegas police busted a Free Speech fundraiser for naughty behavior. Margold ran the show and was charged with multiple counts of pandering. The eleven porn stars charged, named the "Erotic Eleven" by Bill, include Nina Hartley, Sharon Mitchell, Patricia Kennedy, Trixi Tyler, Beatrice Valle, Nina Suave, Lacy Rose, Shaylene, Danyel Cheeks, Ariana and Naughty Angel. All were charged with "Infamous crimes against nature including open and gross lewdnesss and conspiracy to commit prostitution." Translation, they got too friendly with each other and members of the audience during the four hour event.
At least six cops sat through it till the end, before making arrests. Later police gave out the performer's real names and addresses to the news media, leading to harassment of some of the women.
A friend of Bill's, Ray Pistol, the owner of Showgirl Video, paid most of the fines.
Henri Pachard made a movie about the affair Infamous Crimes Against Nature starring the "Erotic Eleven."
"The plot here has the gals driving from LA to Vegas to appear in a sexy stage show. Mike Horner's the cop who stops one carload for speeding, settles for a blow job from Patricia Kennedy, but follows them into town town to spy on their sex lives. Danyel's the real star of the tape with three anal scenes. Also getting their rears plunged are Nikki Sinn by Joey Silvera and Samantha York by Jim Sparks. Horner threatens to arrest Nikki Sinn and Ariana unless they help him get the goods on good-guy politician Tom Byron." (AVN 97)
Margold hates Political Correctness, particularly as embodied by the trade magazine Adult Video News. "If Paul Fishbein were ever busted for anything remotely obscene, AVN would become Automotive Video News the next day. I despise Fishbein. He puts nothing into porn, but just takes. He allows his magazine to put out this hateful gossip column called the "Boneyard" which rolls in the carrion of the industry's misery. My kids are battered enough. They don't need to be bludgeoned by this publication.
"AVN wants to go to its home justified, respectable. But you can't give a birth certificate to a bastard. I consider the X-rated industry a bastard by-product of the real world. In the game of Risk, it's the island of Madagascar, off by itself at the end of the board. I like it that way."
Bill despises the high ratings that AVN gives the work of directors like John Leslie, Paul Thomas, and Michael Ninn.
"Leslie and Thomas are apologizing for all the fun they had growing up by making unerotic, strange anti-human X-rated films. They're trying to punish you for wanting to watch pornography. Their films are so dank and depressing and dismal and despairing. Rather than masturbating, you think about cutting your dick off.
"Look at Michael Ninn's Sex where Gerry Pike sucks Jon Dough's dick. That's not going to appeal to heterosexuals. These films are a series of sights and sounds with no soul signifying nothing. It's all shock value. We made them better before we got guilty.
"Remember Clint Eastwood's Unforgiven ? After all his years of being Clint the patron saint of violence, he makes an apologetic Western...a kinder, gentler version of pabulum that wins an Oscar. Josey Wales is way ahead of Unforgiven.
"I want to keep this industry in the gutter where it belongs."
Margold dislikes the porn trend of copying mainstream entertainment. "John Leslie's Fresh Meat is loathsome; a carbon copy of Natural Born Killers.
"It's difficult to take yourself seriously in a business that isn't serious at all. But legends like Leslie and Thomas are uncomfortable doing porn for a living. So they buy off their consciences with over-inflated budgets and AVN ads.
"I wish some entrepreneur would invest a few million dollars and create AVCR - Adult Video Consumer Report...by the fans for the fans."
AVN Publisher Paul Fishbein replies. "The adult industry has some smart people and good business people, but it's an industry where many people who could never succeed in the real world, find success. If you took a Bill Margold and put him in the real world, he might go homeless... He's an intelligent person but I don't think he could function. But as the adult industry by its nature is an outlaw business, these people can thrive. A guy like Margold has all the free time in the world. He's free to talk. He's a walking soundbite. He's outrageous...but the problem is - he has the time. He's not an entrepreneur or a businessman. He just sits and pontificates eight hours a day. That's great. I wish I had his luxury.
"Margold is a coward. Everything he said to you, he'd never say to my face. He's never made an appointment and come in and talked to me about his concerns.
"Here's the history. I didn't know Margold from Adam. AVN had just started. We went to cover the Meese Commission hearings and Margold spoke. It was impressive that he'd face the fire because most of the people in the business were scared. I give him credit for standing up to these hypocritical bureaucrats.
"I went up to him afterwards and said we'd like to run your comments in AVN. And we ran them and we ran a story on him. And I thought I was an extending a hand of openness. But he's a social misfit and has never extended any graciousness back. "Margold likes to take shots. He's a hero to the fans - to those guys who love pornography and probably don't have much lives of their own. That's great. But his shots at AVN are never fact based. They're self-righteous pontification. He's probably jealous that he isn't taken more seriously by the industry. He likes to think of himself as an outlaw but I'm sure he's burned that he's not taken seriously in the industry with the exception of some of the talent.
"I've tried to extend myself to Margold on many occasions. AVN put him in its Hall of Fame and he snubbed us by not showing up. He never called or apologized. I took it as an affront. AVN didn't write anything. We don't rip him. There have been comments made, but we don't rip anyone.
"We both sit in on the Free Speech Coalition board. Even though I find sitting in the same room with him for four hours nauseating, I still try to extend myself to him for the good of the cause - that censorship is evil.
"When someone can state that certain people [Michael Louis Albo, Wally Wharton, Georgia Miles] would be better off dead, he's in serious need of psychiatric help.
"People want to know why I even waste my breath commenting on Margold. It's because it gives me adrenaline. The more someone takes shots at me, the more I want to put out a better magazine. The more that someone like Margold criticizes me, the better my product becomes, because I get pissed off.
"I challenge him to tell me to my face that he loathes me and tell me why he loathes me. Come to my office and sit here face to face with me and back up his criticisms with facts, information, ballots and printed material."
"Old pornographers never die - they just become bitter, asexual and watch their star fade away."
Who said that? Hustler Erotic Video Guide (HEVG) columnist Wally Anne Wharton.
Bill denies the accuracy of the above, except for the last quotation.
Wally and Bill admit that a pathological part of themselves loves the other.
Wharton makes the common complaint against Bill that he likes to help people until they think for themselves and come to disagree with him on important issues. Then Bill views you as a traitor to his cause, and dismisses you from his life.
Bill, along with Paul Fishbein and others, view Wally as a yellow journalist.
"If I ever see Wally again," says Margold, "and I get a chance to talk to her about that article in HEVG, I will tell her that the wrong people die. And I hope that she understands what I mean by that.
"Wally is better off dead. I can be heartless when I want to be.
"Wally wants to be important. Wally is a tragedy. She's a prime candidate for suicide. Wally is going to wake up one morning and figure out how really useless she is... And nobody is going to shed a tear.
"Ona Zee used to be fine as an actress, but she takes herself way too seriously now that she's a "producer." Ona is a woman aging gracelessly. Wally is a woman aging pathetically.
"In 1988 I met Wally in a class about writing for the X-rated industry. I paid her the supreme compliment that if I had not been with Viper, I would've gone after her. I was immediately enamored with her. She was magnificent - personable, hyper, super-bright, pretty enough for me - I like them thin.
"The best thing that I ever did in my relationship with Wally was not sleep with her. In Tampa Bay, 1994, she wanted to f--- me. But I knew that I'd just become another scalp on her belt, and I'm not a scalp on anyone's belt. There's not a belt big enough to handle my scalp.
"I made Wally a player. I got her a lot of writing assignments. I turned a lot of people on to her. I believed in Wally. I gave her the ultimate compliment - that she was a female version of me.
"I got Wally into the Free Speech Coalition to show her the soulless machinations of soulless people. I made her the editor of the newsletter and she wrote articles attacking the organization. She slit her own throat and outlived her usefulness on the board.
"Some of her contempt for the board is justified.
"Wally is a sanctimonious person who preaches safe sex and then does drugs. How safe is sex when you're doing drugs? You're weakening your system. She smokes more grass than cows chew and she also does something that hyperventilates her - probably speed. I'd love a lawsuit from Wally because you can't defame the defamed.
"The Free Speech Coalition didn't cover up anything about AIDS. After Barbara Doll tested positive, we paid out $15,000 for AIDS testing of performers in April and May of 1995 and everyone turned out negative - including Barbara Doll.
"Wally is jealous that she wasn't the one with AIDS, that she wasn't the center of the hurricane, the center of attention.
"Wally's writing is feminism from a mind like a dry fountain. She spews acid rather than sense. Wally has gone through a lot of relationships in this business that have gone nowhere. I've warned her about some of them. She's been married four times.
"She laments piteously, but Wally asks to be beaten around. When she was so sure that O.J. Simpson should be gassed... I meant that there would be Rodney King-like riots all over again and if she's so anxious for O.J. to be punished, than I'd like her to be punished in retribution. I said that gleefully."
Wally Wharton, in her early 40s, began writing on porn in 1993. "I was not born in a log cabin. I was born at St. John's Hospital in Santa Monica. My father was in the aerospace industry and I spent my early years in Northern California. I moved back down to Southern California for high school and college. I graduated from UCLA.
"I get a lot of fan letters. The fans are lunatics. Even the respectable ones have this odd edge to them. They always say something in their letters that makes it clear that they're jerking off when they're writing to me. That's cool, but they take a lot of liberties when they write. They're pathetic souls. You try to give them advice and they don't take it. They hang around when they're not wanted. And if you give them an inch, that's never enough. For example, they get judgmental at times or they'll put down their wives who would probably cry if they knew their husbands were writing to me. I feel bad about that. They don't realize that what I do is entertainment. They feel I'm an authority on the business. I might be, but I don't want to hear about their home lives.
"Men are basically afraid of women and so they're always trying to pit us against one another. There's a whole genre of erotic film devoted solely to women fighting other women - catfighting." (HEVG)
Wally criticizes FOXE - Fans of X-Rated Entertainment.
"What got me started was the Annabel Chong gang bang debacle. Who show up? The FOXE guys. All of a sudden they're coming to talent meetings held by the Free Speech Association. They're not talent. That's bulls---. A dick in front of a Brownie Instamatic does not constitute talent in this industry.
"These guys are just along for the free ride and the cheap thrill and they waste everybody's time. They show up in some terrible FOXE T-shirt which they probably haven't washed in ten years - not to mention their hair either. They're losers. Perfect for slaves - the inert type that are ripe for the willing dominatrix.
"They suck the life out of you. As performers, we have a lot of energy to put out there. These people are like toadstools...mushrooms...some sort of parasitic fungus. They take energy away from you. They feed off your creative energy. If you don't know that, you suffer by being pulled in all sorts of different directions. Today I was trying to get work done and the phone kept ringing and not one call was about anything important.
"I'm not with the Free Speech Coalition. I'm with the Cheap Talk Coalition. That whole organization is for everything but free speech. The entire time I was with them all they ever did was try to shut me up. Too many egos are involved and that gets in the way of accomplishing anything substantial.
"The organization is for the benefit of manufacturers of adult material. The big issue on the table right now is the pirating of videotapes. It benefits the manufacturers and distributors. There is no concern given for the talent. A few years ago they tried to organize something called the Pink Ladies but it fell apart. I gave a lot of my free time for a year to help the talent, but I realized it was a losing battle. What needs to happen is that the Old Boys Network and the old boys themselves have to die off.
"I think of HEVG as the mother magazine. It gave me my first monthly column. Of course the editor has the final say, but we work well together [before Mike fired her.] Albo took me off the simple task of reviewing movies and let me loose on the industry...
"I have a weakness for certain types of men. If there was one thing I could change about myself, it would be stop being so goddamn noble."
Wharton's comments about the members of FOXE infuriated Margold and led to the breakup of their friendship.
"Wally slept with [HEVG editor] Mike Albo," says Bill. "He worships her because he's a pathetic slug. If murder were legal, Albo would be one of the first people shot. He's made too many enemies in this business. He enjoys the pain he delivers. He's a man scorned by Nina Suave, by Wally Wharton, by life itself.
"I have letters that he wrote me, thanking me for what I did for him. I was his benefactor and you don't do that to your benefactor. Particularly you don't do that to my organization. You can take me apart, but you can't do that to FOXE (Fans of X-rated Entertainment). You can't call the fans geeks, stalkers and cretins. Don't do that because you have to deal with me, and you'll regret it. I am eternal and none of these people [Wally Wharton, Paul Fishbein and Michael Albo] will last."
After I wrote things on the internet in early 1997 that Bill didn't like, he also predicted my untimely demise. Several other pornographers followed suit, climaxed by Albo's threats in late Spring. At the same time, Mike began spreading the word that Wally was about to die.
Margold: "I am the ultimate cockroach. I am a survivor. Vengeance is mine saith the Lord. Read my card. "God created man. William Margold created himself." Don't f--- with me.
Wally and Bill do agree on one thing. That HEVG editor Michael Louis Albo is a dangerous, suicidal, drug-addicted schizophrenic. Wally claims Albo fired her because she'd neither sleep with him nor sell him heroin.
Albo admits past problems with drugs, but says he's been drug-free since 1993. The short obese editor lost most of his hair after an addiction to heroin. At times, Mike appears overwhelmed by porn and by life, and openly contemplates suicide. Like Bill Margold, he seems most alive when fighting.
Mike says he likes Wally and her writing, especially on those rare times when she turned it on deadline, but that she's been a bad representative of HEVG.
Wally showed up high at the AVN Awards in January, 1996, say Albo and other sources. Mike later told Wharton to take time off to get a handle on her problems. In February, Albo called security to get rid of her from Hustler offices because "she was acting like a f---ing maniac, screaming stuff about me being on heroin."
Wharton denies the substance of the above charges.
Albo says HEVG is meant in fun.
"We always rag on Bill," laughs Albo in the Spring of 1996. "He takes himself so seriously. He's like Jim Holliday in that respect. Personalitywise, Bill and I don't mesh. But I love to get together with Holliday. He amuses the hell out of me. I'm sorry that he took so seriously my remark that he was a "self-proclaimed historian."
"I don't treat porn with reverence. It's immediate, totally disposable pop culture, like rock and roll. I'm not sure any of the current stuff will be talked about it fifty years, and I just don't see the need for a porn historian."
In addition to the FSC, PAW and the XRCO, other Margold creations include FOXE and the naming of the Silver FoxXxes - performers over 40 years of age who knock out "grey bang porn."
Their strip show at the sixth annual FOXE awards may've drawn the loudest applause.
Margold suggests that viewing tapes of the Silver FoxXxes helps men bring alive their fantasies of sleeping with their mothers.
"I never liked my mommy," says Margold, "so I don't plan to sleep with any of the Silver FoxXxes. Some are palatable - Holly Teeze, Carole Troy.
"I'm 52. I doubt that I could find someone my age that I'd like to roll around with.
"I know a couple of 30-year olds who interest me. But I'm much more concerned about the New York Yankees pitching staff."
FOXE, Margold's club for porn fans, hosts annual awards shows which attract dozens of performers and hundreds of fans.
At the February, 1996, Margold took the unprecedented step of banning three persons from the event - Michael Louis Albo, Wally Wharton and groupie Georgia Miles.
"I don't mind when people criticize me," says Margold, "but I won't put up with dumping on the fans."
Both Albo and Wharton rip FOXE.
"I felt uncomfortable at the three FOXE shows I attended before being banned," says Michael. "I felt I was in the middle of a bunch of stalkers. Every guy was like Travis Bickle [the Robert De Niro character in Taxi Driver].
"I felt uncomfortable because many fans didn't treat the women (performers) with respect. They just followed them around trying to grab them."
"Fans followed me around," remembers Wally, "grabbing me. Even when I tried to prepare for my talk, they wouldn't stop. We girls get stalked by fans. It's frightening. Sometimes Bill helps and sometimes he doesn't. 'You're getting what you deserve for creating bad karma', he'll say.
"The next day after FOXE shows I'm black and blue from being grabbed."
"Fans are not grabbing Wally, they're pushing her away," says Margold. "Wally should live long enough to be stalked. She would revel in the stalking.
"What is stalking? Stalking is the perception of attention. People with malevolent minds perceive that anyone who pays them attention is stalking them.
"If Albo, Wally and Georgia kill themselves, people will say that I forced them to. In that I'll take great pride.
"I'm not as cuddly a teddy bear as people think I am. I have an awful lot of teeth and I will sink them into anybody who dares to endanger the overall good I think I'm creating.
"Porn is an important part of society. We get society up and off instead of out in the street with a hatchet in its hand.
"We're a catharsis. I'm upset with people who watch us but won't admit it. That's why I started FOXE. It has 1700 members.
"There's a warmth at a FOXE show that no other event in the industry can capture. I've taken the two great unwashed masses of the business - the fans and the performers - and brought them together in the supreme melting pot which is FOXE. Nothing is asked of them and everything is given to them. And they give to each other. Two three-legged dogs have a greater chance of surviving than one three-legged dog.
"Fans of X-rated Entertainment are like sports fans. They revere the performer. They get the same vicarious thrill watching Tori Welles suck a dick as they get from watching Jerry Rice catch a touchdown.
"I was asked how many axe murderers, stalkers and perverts attended the FOXE Awards? I said "None because of the three people I kept out - Albo, Wharton and Miles.""
"Most people regard sex as a private matter," explains Pat Riley. "Not any kind of people, nor malevolent people nor religious right, just people generally. Most people regard sex as something you don't do in public, certainly not in movies. It's not because they're anti-non-reproductive sex, nor are they pro-censorship. They believe in live-and-let-live. They may even practice promiscuity, especially when young BUT f---ing on screen is too dirty, especially for girls.
"Associating with a porn star is, for most people, and particularly the females, like being near a disease carrier... Look at the contempt in which the stalker conventions are held and the type of people who go there. If you ever wanted to see a walking definition of loser, take a look at Margold's crowd." (RAME)
Curious about Margold's crowd, I attended its sixth annual awards show. About 1000 members showed, mainly men, and disproportionately to the general population, they sported obscene T-shirts, pierced body parts, long hair, jewelry, and a generally rough exterior.
Despite consuming large amounts of alcohol, they generally behaved properly. Those who didn't were whisked away by security.
Throughout the evening, fans surrounded their favorite objects of desire, taking pictures, getting autographs, and at times touching the performer's breasts and other private parts. Man who touched the women inappropriately got slapped.
Near the end of the sixth annual FOXE show, after midnight when most persons had left, the porn girls became raunchier. Two attractive performers put on the hottest show of the night.
I stood next to the stage with about 150 guys pawing at the air like wolves trying to touch the two women. A petite blonde stripper danced first, eventually uncovering her petite body, bending over in front of us and pulling apart her vagina and anus. She wore a ring in her outer vaginal lips and allowed many men to feel between her legs. Not to be outdone, Veronica Brazil ascended the stage and uncovered her big breasted Amazon body. Brazil dominated the blonde, licking her pussy just inches away from us. Then Brazil rolled on top of her, interlocked her legs with those of the blonde, and rubbed her dark pussy back and forth against the golden gash.
Their performance drove us wild but no one jumped on stage.
Afterwards, Brazil and other porn females exposed and stretched their genitalia for fan photos. Brazil frequently pleaded "Please f--- me in the ass," but wouldn't allow anyone to publicly satisfy her urge.
Margold makes identical comments every show, such as: "If society won't admit they're jacking off, they shouldn't be surprised when Congress cuts off their dicks."
"Bill does good work," admits HEVG Editor Michael L. Albo. "He performs a valuable service. Something should be done for fans."
When he's serious rather than hilarious, Albo praises Bill's work with porn fans, free speech and troubled performers.
Jeremy Stone covered the fourth annual FOXE Awards for AFW. He described the fans as "respectful, polite and only suffer from camera-itis when porn stars decide to pose half-naked.
"The fans love him [Margold], as they should. He's the only one savvy enough to see how important they are. The X-rated community at large looks upon the customers as freaks and as something to be avoided. While the smut press and sex workers on every level of the industry effectively suck the dicks of the porn money men to survive, Bill has reached out to the people that line the pockets of the porn big wigs. They are the most responsive, caring and giving people in X, something more of the performers should take the time to find out." (AFW 8/94 p.44-45)
At the request of his friend Brandy Alexandre, Bill banned me from the 1997 FOXE Awards because I "was a threat to the industry."
Like God, Margold bestows names on his creatures. Bill seeks ones that are euphonic and box-cover oriented. Examples include Bunny Bleu, Viper and Alyssa Allure. Names waiting for the right performers to come along include Diabolique, Piranha, Syren and Mary Contrary.
Bill Margold discovered the following porn talent - Serena ('73), Kelly Nichols ('75), Pat Manning and Jennifer Hart ('76), Tiffany Clark and Mike Ranger ('78), Lee Carroll ('79), Drea ('80), and in 1983: Bunny Bleu, Kimberly Carson, Desiree Lane, Amber Lynn, Brandy Alexander, and Alex Jordan ('91).
"Seka was as good to work with as she looked and she f---ed even better than she looked. Each experience with Seka was incendiary. She was molten. It was fun to have sex with her because she enjoyed herself. Seka was all animal. Confident, she never doubted she'd become famous. She filled a void in 1978 as a blonde because the other big stars, Georgina Spelvin, Samantha Fox, Annette Haven, Desiree Cousteau and Veronica Hart, were brunettes."
Along with Marilyn Chambers, and Ginger Lynn, Seka ranks among the three most important performers. "Ginger Lynn is the video queen. She was the girl next door when the next door became the video store. Her willingness to do anal and double penetration made her an all-time favorite performer. She bent over backwards to satisfy her fans."
Ginger and Viper intertwined in 'legit' pics after leaving porn, appearing in Vice Academy 4 and Leather Jackets.
In Adam 4/84, Margold rates the porn queens. "Seka is the filet mignon in the world of hamburger. Ultra animal. Enjoys sex - likes sucking cock, getting f---ed... And gives back to the man - responds internally. She doesn't just lie there, she works on you while you're working on her."
Bill worked with Jennifer Wells and Seka in Superware. "It was a treat to be sandwiched between those two women - like animated, aroused pieces of bread and I was the meat. They tried to work through me to get to each other, and they engulfed me.
"Serena is my all-time favorite person in the industry, like an adopted sister. She's an ultra-hot human being and the flower child of porn. We were close friends for four years before we had sex. She cried before we worked together in Hot Skin because she said it would ruin our relationship. I said, no it won't, and I screwed her bang, bang, bang, and she loved it, and I loved it, and it was good sex with violence, heat.
"I take credit for helping her go to Jamie Gillis, which became the great love affair of the industry. She was despondent, and I sent her to New York and told Jamie that the legend was coming to meet him. And they fell in love."
Margold's dream of Adult Video Consumer Report -- a publication by the fans for the fans - already exists. It's called RAME - the internet newsgroup rec.arts.movies.erotica which Bill despises.
On the last day of April, 1997, he posted: "Before I deliver my "State of the Union" or respond to any of your questions, I'd like to know if you are a member of FOXE, and if you are not, why not? I've noted some animosity toward me and of course must consider your trivial tirades as a form of jealousy. I've been where most men (and women) can only dream about going. My career has been very long, very productive and very positive. Don't judge what you don't know. And don't pretend to be a fan unless you are willing to pay for the right to bray.
"I've always wanted to create "The Adult Video Consumer Report" and the net just might be the place... At least a newsgroup like that would have marginal value unlike certain current newsgroups who suck up any mis-information they can and then regurgitate it out like retarded whales who have swallowed something unpalatable.... I guess ignorance is bliss when one of the false gods RAME bows down to is Luke "Edsel" Ford "
I E-mailed Margold 2-12-98 for permission to attend that weekend's FOXE Awards. He replied: "You really are a glutton for punishment, aren't you? You are most certainly NOT welcome to attend, and are even beneath my banning you, as I've done with [Mike] Albo and (marginally) [Evan] Wright [both of Hustler]. One would think that by this time, your position of supremely tragic, woebegone journalist would have worn transparently thin as the fabric of First Amendment tissue you hide behind should be perforated and put to a better use than you would ever understand."