Out of Print

By Josh Eliot

 

As I grow older, I get more nostalgic about experiences from my past. It’s natural to feel this way when we see things that bring back great memories and helped form who we are. Sometimes it’s seeing a movie. When I was 15 years old, in 1977, I talked my parents into taking me to see Diane Keaton in Looking For Mr. Goodbar. A decision I’m sure my parents regretted once the subject of the movie became crystal clear. I’m sure they thought that since Tuesday Weld was also in the movie, it would be pretty tame. Not! The film started with a haunting song montage including “Don’t Ask to Stay Until Tomorrow” by Marlena Shaw and it really set the tone. The movie was a tough and gritty expose on the bar fly, one night stand dating scene in New York. I’m sure mostly anyone who is reading this blog has seen this movie at some point in their life and came away from it moved or shaken. For decades, I and hundreds of others, tried to access this movie on DVD. It was originally released on VHS and LaserDisc, but evidently by the time negotiations came around for a DVD release it was dead in the water. Various chat rooms over the last decades point to the legal issues and costly fees involving the music rights. It seems to have simply vanished. It went “out of print.”

When I saw this movie at 15, I was thrilled to see the male hustler character played perfectly by Richard Gere. The moment he danced around in his jockstrap while holding a glow in the dark knife both tantalized and terrified me. I think this might have been the first “male nudity” I ever saw in a film, unfortunately for my mother sitting right next to me. The movie’s soundtrack was filled with great tunes like “Don’t Leave Me This Way” by Thelma Houston, “Prelude To Love,” “Try Me, I Know We Can Make It” and “Could It Be Magic” by Donna Summer and “Love Hangover” by Diana Ross. The music worked so brilliantly with the raw, realistic story, making the whole experience feel 100% real. Diane Keaton, famously known to be shy about her body and always dressing in long sleeves and a buttoned collar, had several nude scenes in the movie. She won the Academy Award the very same year for Annie Hall and you can bet your ass this role in Goodbar helped seal that win. What a film, but yeah, unfortunately I could not watch it and relive all those great memories and feelings because it was simply out of print.

 

Looking for Mr. Goodbar lobby cards

Looking for Mr. Goodbar lobby cards

 

The feeling of never seeing a movie again that you loved watching or loved working on must have been how the cast and crew felt back in the early days of porn. Before VHS, DVD and Blu-ray, the movies would show in an adult cinema then pretty much disappear. Maybe they would come back again to play as a second feature for a new release. But with the explosion of VHS on the X-rated market, suddenly all the new adult productions had a life beyond the new release stage. They would be widely available for purchase and viewings forever. That was exactly what we assumed when we were making the gay and bi porn movies back in the 1980s. There are a lot of collectors who have vast libraries both VHS and DVD. I have those collector tendencies too. I just added a new “instant favorite” autographed photo of Will Seagers to my collection. He signed a black-and-white shot from LA Tool & Die. I gave it a place of honor on my office wall just under the signed photo of Bette Davis.

 

Some of Josh's signed photos: Will Seagers, Bette Davis, Haruo Nakajima (Godzilla), Rob Cryston

Some of Josh's signed photos: Will Seagers, Bette Davis, Haruo Nakajima (Godzilla), Rob Cryston

 

I like to post trailers, clips and teasers from my library of movies for Catalina Video on YouTube and Instagram. It’s like a virtual collection, and I like the idea of letting them have some sort of permanent place in history on those channels. It seems that a new generation of worldwide gay and straight viewers really responds positively and has an appreciation for nostalgic porn clips. I thought it might be cool to post a newly cut trailer of the first movie I ever made, called Runaways, back in 1989. I used to have the VHS, which showed a young, sad-eyed twink looking through a dusty, cracked nine pane window on the box cover. Then on the DVD cover, they swapped the twink for a much hotter shot of Jake Corbin. Somewhere along the way, I loaned out that DVD and never got it back so I started searching for it online. I found the movie available on several websites with a fabulous new cover but, much to my dismay, the DVD version said “out of print” - leaving only the digital version available for download or single scene viewing. I thought, this must be a one-off. Maybe the owners of the Catalina Library sold out and will re-release it down the line? I purchased the download, cut my trailer and posted it on my Instagram and YouTube. Then it happened again with another title I was looking for and I started wondering what was going on. Why aren’t these titles available? Suddenly, I received a mailing for a major sale on most if not all of the William Higgins classics like Pizza Boy, Hot Rods, The Young and the Hung, Preppy Summer to name a few, with the title of the sale saying: “Get Them Now Before They Are OUT OF PRINT Forever.” There were also Dirk Yates and Catalina Video sections as well.

 

Runaways box covers over the years

Runaways box covers over the years

 

A little piece of my heart broke at that moment. What we always thought would be around and available on some sort of tape or disc or “newly invented format” was not to be. It became very clear to me that there would be no future restoration of these movies, there would be no re-release of these movies, there would be no “tangible,” hold-it-in-your-hand version of these movies any longer. I would have been content leaving this earth thinking that some “physical form” - complete with original movie artwork of the Catalina Library featuring John Travis, Scott Masters, Chet Thomas, Chi Chi LaRue, myself and others - would always be available. But evidently that is not to be. I get the digital thing, but it doesn’t mean I have to embrace it. I already had huge respect for the way BijouWorld treasures their films, directors and customers. The restoration costs they absorb to make their library of films the best they can be for future generations to enjoy and collect in a physical and digital form speaks volumes about their integrity. Even though the Catalina library of movies we made will not get the same “white glove” polished treatment Bijou offers to its library, I am more than content to know that the movies I looked up to and shaped me as an adult video director are being preserved.

I feel the need to have a “Happy Ending.” Everyone loves a happy ending don’t they? On October 23, 2020, the DVD version of Looking For Mr. Goodbar was finally released through LA Entertainment, an Australia-based company. Something nobody saw coming, and which a lot of collectors are anxious to own.

 

 

Bio of Josh Eliot:

At the age of 25 in 1987, Josh Eliot was hired by Catalina Video by John Travis (Brentwood Video) and Scott Masters (Nova Video). Travis trained Eliot on his style of videography and mentored him on the art of directing. Josh directed his first movie, Runaways, in 1987. By 2009 when Josh parted ways with Catalina Video, he'd produced and directed hundreds of features and won numerous awards for Best Screenplay, Videography, Editing, and Directing. He was entered into the GayVN Hall of fame in 2002. 

 

You can read Josh Eliot's previous blogs for Bijou here:

Coming out of my WET SHORTS
FRANK ROSS, The Boss
Our CALIGULA Moment
That BUTTHOLE Just Winked at Me!
DREAMLAND: The Other Place
A Salty Fuck in Saugatuck
Somebody, Call a FLUFFER!
The Late Great JOHN TRAVIS, My POWERTOOL Mentor
(Un)Easy Riders
7 Years with Colt Model MARK RUTTER
Super NOVA
Whatever Happened to NEELY O’HARA?
Is That AL PARKER In Your Photo?
DOWN BY LAW: My $1,000,000 Mistake
We Waited 8hrs for a Cum Shot... Is That a World Record?
Don't Wear "Short Shorts" on the #38 Geary to LANDS END
How Straight Are You Really?
BEHIND THE (not so) GREEN DOOR
The BOOM BOOM Room
CATCHING UP with Tom DeSimone
Everybody’s FREE to FEEL GOOD
SCANDAL at the Coral Sands Motel
DEEP INSIDE THE CASTRO: The Castro Theatre
DEEP INSIDE THE CASTRO: The Midnight Sun
RSVP: 2 Weeks Working on a Gay Cruise Ship
VOYAGER of the Damned
I'M NOT A LESBIAN DIRECTOR
Diving Into SoMa/Folsom: THE FOLSOM STREET FAIR
Diving into SoMa/Folsom: A TALE OF TWO STUDS
BALL BROTH
My 1992 “Porn Set” Diary

 
Rate this blog entry:
470 Hits
0 Comments

Glenn Burke: African-American Gay Baseball Player

Glenn Burke

Pride Month is upon us, and in these admittedly troubled times, I sometimes find it inspirational to compare and contrast what was going on in 1978, forty years ago, in the world of LGBTQ persons.

1978 was a year of hope and tragedy; the gay icon Harvey Milk was assassinated, but the Briggs initiative, which would have banned gay and lesbian persons from being teachers in California, was defeated.

But something else was going in the world of sports, which resulted in an action spontaneously made by the first openly gay major league baseball player becomming a common physical expression in our culture.
 

Newspaper article about Glenn Burke entitled We'll Never Know How Good He Could Have Been

Glenn Burke, known as “King Kong” by his colleagues because of his massive biceps, was the first openly gay Major League baseball player. And he was open about it.

According to an NPR interview, “Because you'd look over in his locker, you know, and he had his red jock in his locker. You know, nobody wore a red jock, you know? And Glenn wore a red jock and, you know, he'd be dancing around in the clubhouse.”

Hmm … I did not know wearing a red jockstrap was indicative of one's sexual orientation, but times were different, and also according to the interview, the teammates in the minor leagues really did not know.

But then, also according to the interview, the Latino guys figured it out, and started calling him “maricón” (which means, essentially, faggot), perhaps jokingly, and they supported him when he entered the major leagues.

Glenn played on the Dodgers, and when the management found out he was gay, they offered him $75,000 to get married. To this offer, Burke replied with acerbic wit, “I guess you mean to a woman.” Burke did not get married.
 

Glenn Burke Dodgers baseball calrd

He was traded to the Oakland A's as a result, close to San Francisco, at that time the gay mecca of meccas. But Glenn was not able to thrive. Billy Martin came over from the Yankees to manage the team soon after, and his homophobia was apparent. During the spring training, he was introducing all the players to the new players that were coming in. When he got to Glenn, he said, “Oh, by the way, this is Glenn Burke, and he's a faggot.”

The discrimination and harassment continued, and Glenn was demoted to Triple-A ball. He retired at the age of 27.

The story gets sadder, but there's a happy twist. Glenn Burke invented the high five! Yes, he did!

According to an article in the Advocate, Burke was waiting for his chance at bat on October 22, 1977. The Dodgers were playing against the Houston Astros. Left fielder Dusty Baker had just hit his 30th home run, putting the team into the playoffs. As Baker came back from his circuit around the bases, Burke thrust his hand out into the air. Burke instinctively slapped Baker's palm. Voila! Right after that action, Burke, his his first major league home run. When he returned to the dugout, Baker gaive Burke that high five.
 

Glenn Burke giving a high five on the baseball field

Glenn Burke died of AIDS-related complications on May 30, 1995, after struggles with drug addiction and homelessness.

If it wasn't for the legacy of Glenn Burke, Jason Collins and Michael Sam would still be unable to be their true selves in the sports world.

And Glenn's integrity makes those high fives, that expression of pride and jubilation, so much more meaningful. There's a history behind all of them them, and a history we should not forget in a time when one doubts that the arc of the universe curves toward justice.

Rate this blog entry:
1420 Hits
0 Comments

RetroStuds of the Past: Focus on Johnny Dawes

 

Johnny Dawes portrait

Johnny Dawes, famous face in 1980s pre-condom gay porn, was born in Akron, Ohio, on March 22, 1955. His birth name was Brian Lee.

His career in gay porn started in the late seventies, was in a loop called “Toilet Training,: part of Falcon Video Pac #23. Acccording to Gay Erotic Video Index, in 1978, he made a film for Falcon Studios, Dirt Bikes, aka F Truck.

Thus began a prodigious career for many studios, pretty much the major ones of the late 1970s and 1980s, such as HIS Video, LeSalon, Mustang, and Marathon, and and other less known ones such as Ari Productions and Stardust.

Johnny has starred with a number of actors which include Jose Garcia, Magdalena Montezuma Montez as well as Sharon Kane.

Paired together eight times, Chris Burns has had the privilege of being seen most frequently with Johnny Dawes, in flicks such as Pleasure Beach (HIS Video).

The collection of movies in which they have appeared together also includes The Private Pleasures of John Holmes (Stardust), School Of Hard Cocks (HIS Video), and Revenge of the Nighthawk in Leather (HIS Video).

Dawes retired in 1986, but came out of retirement in 1989, to make several films. In fact, a vintage gay porn magazine of that period, Thrust, celebrates his return, “the return of a bluemovie sensation,” in Who's Dat Boy.
 

Johnny Dawes in Thrust Magazine
Johnny Dawes in Thrust Magazine in never before seen photos

Bijou Video shows him at this versatile best in Knockout, originally released by Pan Pacific Productions. Touted as the “only homoerotic boxing film,” Knockout reveals the intense world of boxing, where a sport of knocking out merges into knockout sex. Johnny Dawes plays the previous boxing champion, and he joins Eric Stryker, playing the new lightweight boxing champion David West, and David's trainer, Mark, played by Andrew Ryan, in a three-way jack off. Johnny returns to fuck Eric on a bed; the ex-champion thus shows his real dominance by deftly topping the new champion in this scene.
 

Johnny Dawes wearing boxing gloves

Jack Deveau filming
Johnny Dawes and Eric Stryker in Knockout

Other Bijou Video classics he appears in are Games, where he plays a swimmer who fools around with Mike Davis in a locker room, and Bad Bad Boys aka Bad Boys, directed by Tom DeSimone (Mustang), where he plays a runaway who seeks solace in the company of a street gang called The Red Devils, undergoing an intense sexual initiation as well as rebelling against the gang's evil boss (and Dawes shows his acting chops here).
 

Mike Davis and Johnny Dawes in Games

Johnny Dawes rimming Mike Davis in Games
Mike Davis and Johnny Dawes in Games

Poster for Bad Bad Boys

And speaking of acting chops, according to the January 1990 edition of Manshots, he acted in the Los Angeles production of Night Sweat; he was a documentary filmmaker (A Dance with Death) and, most interestingly, an opera historian. He wrote an article on the Jewish-American soprano Alma Gluck, who sang at the beginning of the last century, for Opera Digest.
 

Jack Deveau filming

Wow! An embarrassment of riches; so much talent in that lithe yet sculpted body (not to mention his aesthetically pleasing cock, a shiny pole of power). Overall, in his performances, he manages to combine vulnerability with an easy, confident masculinity.
 

Johnny Dawes nude

Brian Lee aka Johnny Dawes died of AIDS-related complications on July 25, 1989.

He performed this finely crafted poem in the AIDS play Night Sweat, four years before his untimely death from that disease:
 

Robert Chesley book Hard Plays Stiff Parts featuring Night Sweat

Oh, let night speak of me for day
Knows not how breaks with woe my heart,
Knows not how I mournful stray,
Weeping for thee, so dear thou art.
The sad night weeps with me, and lays
His tear wet cheek against my own;
Although I walk in sunlit ways,
Still doth my heart in darkness moan.
The night shall speak of me and say
All things to thee I dare not show,
And to thy dreams my love display,
Till thou art melted by my woe.

 

Johnny Dawes black and white photo
Rate this blog entry:
6759 Hits
0 Comments
Featured

Our Favorite Bijou Gay Porn Scenes: What's Yours?

 


I thought this week it might be fun to do a more interactive blog (jacking off is fun, but your best friend isn't always yourself).

 

We're going to put out (maybe in more ways than one) some of our favorite Bijou gay porn scenes.

Then, you can share yours, and we'll even link to some of those clips on our websites on our Twitter page.

Madam Bubby's Picks

I'm into dominance and submission big time (the big is more mental that physical, but I do appreciate size, especially muscles!).

Turned On!


There's a scene from Al Parker's movie Turned On! that always gets me going. Now Al, for me, and I might claim many others, is a total top man (and I just don't mean fucking): he exudes a dominant, but not so much in your face (but then, who wouldn't want his glorious cock in your face) masculinity, but one that doesn't need much overcooked “on your knees, boy” proclamations.

But what makes this scene so fascinating for me is Al submitting, and submitting, endlessly... a hunger that is never satisfied, but is satisfied in its own hunger. Kind of the effect Al creates when he wields his mighty cock...

What is Al doing? In a locker room with male body parts behind every locker door, Parker and Sky Dawson (the man of Al's dreams in this movie) service rows (a sort of chorus line) of humpy, athletic men in jockstraps. It's a fantasy, but what it makes it even more enticing for me is the jockstraps. They conceal but also show.

Pictures From the Black Dance

Now, another movie, from Roger Earl's Dungeons of Europe trilogy, Pictures from the Black Dance, contains a scene which really gets me going. What's interesting is not so much the leathersex itself, but the overall dominance/submission dynamic I find erotic:

In the last scene, Dick Johnson is leading a hooded guy in a bondage/body suit. This is Tony Starr, who had previously been a dominant in the movie! The last dance, the climactic one. The slapping sound is its rhythmic accompaniment. They are still in the dungeon, but the wall looks like fall foliage. After what looks like a whiff of poppers, Johnson powerfully creates total submission; by pulling bottom up by hook on bondage suit. He barks one command that seems to pull most of the action together: SIT!

Johnson then attaches Starr to the board, and one hears a stomping and slamming sound with his powerful boots. He then, with amazing confidence, picks up the guy and then places him on the floor.

This lying down position, especially when contrasted with a standing position, is one of stripping away of conventional social norms, which often occurs in BDSM role playing. Johnson now has his bottom in this position of total submission in order for him to wield his power, by pulling the cock and balls on triangle attached to his cock and balls; this tension shows that Johnson himself actually reciprocating once he has shown his power.

Miriam Webster's Picks

I'm particularly interested in porn directors who use sexual explicitness as a vehicle for artistic expression. I also find emotionally raw states (such as love, sadness, or fear) to be intriguing mental spaces in which to tap into eroticism, the heightened emotional state acting as a potential sexual enhancer. The two scenes I'm featuring play with these approaches.

the Idol


The entirety of Tom DeSimone's The Idol is a well-crafted build from sexual isolation and frustration to sexual freedom and open expression, each successive sex scene progressing the main character, Gary, along in his sexual journey.

The final erotic encounter in The Idol is a romantic and bittersweet one. We know from the beginning that college track star Gary will die at a young age. The film is structured around his funeral, and this final flashback to a moment in his life shows him in bed with his lover (who has been longing for him from afar in the flashbacks until this point). The lighting is soft and blue, with the soundtrack pared down to simply the thunderstorm outdoors accompanied by their murmurings and moans, and the camera pans lingeringly over their entwined bodies. They take their time kissing and fucking to the sounds of rumbling thunder, rain, and wind. DeSimone's strong sense of erotic pacing is highlighted here, creating a potent crescendo of sexual tension. The scene ends as the two collapse into each other in exhaustion after climax and the soundtrack kicks in with a song echoing the claim, "I could never leave you." We know that this statement is untrue. The story has finally brought these men together and has brought Gary to terms with his own sexuality, but these journeys are about to end.

This scene is visually gorgeous, atmospheric, and emotionally effective. Even the sentimentality of some of the devices (the slow-mo at the end, the romantic dialogue) doesn't interfere, but, rather, feels perfectly earned and adds to the ambiance. This is a brilliant example of scene that is, at once, melancholic, romantic, and erotic.
The Destroying Angel


Peter de Rome's The Destroying Angel is easily one of the most unusual films in the Bijou catalog. It tells a Poe-inspired story of a priest on sabbatical who engages in mushroom trips and sex, which hauntingly meld together.

The film uses sexual explicitness to evoke as much horror as eroticism, playing with themes of repression/compulsion and revulsion/attracton. The scene where Caswell (the priest) fucks a young man he meets at a party is deeply unsettling and captivating. The two men eat mushrooms and Caswell observes his doppelganger entering into the action. "How many of us do you see?" he asks his partner. "Just you and me," is the calm reply. But we see the friend jerking off two Caswells at once, as the camera pans over to his double in an eerie moment of trick photography. Caswell seemingly watches himself from both positions. Both Caswells are alternately terrified, confused, maniacal, and sexually ravenous. Horrible yowls and laughs echo on the soundtrack and Caswell comes on his double's face, but won't stop trying to have sex even after his partner is clearly spent. His appetite is insatiable. It takes a sudden cut to achieve an end to the scene, which could have continued interminably in a wild hallucinatory state of unending erotic hunger.

This scene is a nightmarish distortion of sex, frenzied and made of pure compulsion, with Caswell watching himself in horror as if in shock at what he is doing. He can't reconcile himself with his sexuality and it bursts forth from him as if another him has been created, one made of his own repressed sexual side, his shadow self a creature of erotic monstrosity that can only be fed by being given more, more, until eventual destruction must occur.

Steven Toushin's Picks

Bijou owner Steven Toushin's selections are from two additional Steve Scott films (Turned On! also being by Scott): Wanted and Inches.

Wanted

In Wanted, the scene shows brutal, sadistic warden Jack Wrangler as he makes an inmate suck his cock, rifle in hand, then fucks him, while he's supposed to be guarding a chain gang. This scene is especially notable in its depiction of an erotic prison fantasy between warden and prisoner that is not as typically found between men in films.

Inches

In Inches, its the cruisey barroom scene near the end of the film. This scene is relatable to those who were present in the era or who have experienced bar backroom action, capturing a sense of realism in the small details of the scene which make it feel like an actual '70s-era bar backroom, with anonymous sex going on everywhere.

 

Check out these movies and more on DVD at Bijouworld.com and on demand at Bijougayporn.com and don't forget to email or tweet us your favorite Bijou scenes.  You can also comment on this blog.  We look foward to hearing from you!

Rate this blog entry:
Recent comment in this post
Andy
I have several favorite scenes, so I'll try to keep it brief and in no particular order. -- any scene where Jack Wrangler bottoms... Read More
Friday, 12 January 2018 01:13
15153 Hits
1 Comment

Contact Us | 800-932-7111 | Join our email list

Go to top