A Long Day’s Porn Shoot: We Visit The Set Of ‘Homecoming’

Monday, April 1 by
Don't screw up your lines-? 

“These baby wipes are dry,” proclaims porn star Ralph Long, asking a crew member to fetch a fresh box. For the tenth time today, Director B. Skow takes the opportunity to tease his lead, “Wow, Ralphie’s really turning into a bitch, you guys!” The crew snickers. Everyone takes their positions and the shoot commences.

Skow’s not that far off the mark: Long is playing Jim, a cross-dressing-ex-military freak who has returned home to meet, and incidentally have sex with, members of his adopted family. Ralph is buried beneath a pound of drag make-up, cracking jokes about how he should be singing leads in a glam band. He’s invested in this part, and he ought to be: longtime colleague B. Skow loosely based the script on Long’s revelation to his family about his career in porn at their Thanksgiving meal a couple years ago.

“Yeah, up to that point, they thought I just worked in music videos,” Long recalls from the make-up chair. “My mom kicked me out.”

Fittingly, this film is entitled “Homecoming”, the newest hardcore piece from adult production house Girlfriends Films. Although Girlfriends specializes in lesbian fare, B. Skow has directed hundreds of straight titles for the company, garnering numerous AVN awards within their catalog.

Skow stands on the other side of an enormous kitchen of a rented Sherman Oaks house, detailing his process with veteran adult screenwriter David Stanley, “We just get story ideas, y’know, something like Ralph’s, I come up with the story, except we had this idea and just took it somewhere much freakier. David writes it out, and Ralph comes up with the budget.” Beyond the make-up, beyond his on-camera performance, beyond the distantly-biographical script, Long is also the Production Manager. He lined up the location, the equipment and the craft services for the kitchen. He’s on top of the ins and outs of the shoot in nearly every facet in front of and behind the camera. And now he is going to have sex with Casey Calvert.

Calvert, a spritely Jewess with a petite frame and cut-off shorts, bounds playfully into the kitchen, perusing the hot dogs on the craft services table. “I’m hungry,” she pouts. Fellow star Jenna J. Ross tells her to eat something. “I can’t eat. I’m doing anal,” she says, rather matter-of-factly. The two exchange diet secrets on the day of their back door shoots, like two pros talking shop, “I eat gummy bears on my anal day,” quips Ross. Calvert flashes a smile, “I eat granola!”

On this aforementioned day, Casey’s regimen sounds more like preparation for major surgery than the sexual fantasy that is being constructed. “Imodium in the morning,” she says, craning her neck to remember, “I have to have breakfast. Then I use this little guy.” She holds up a box for a Fleet enema. “I also have a set of dilators that I use to stretch out, but I forgot those today, so I’m gonna borrow Ralph to get ready.”

Calvert’s candidness emanates throughout the shoot. While there is overlap amongst crew duties, everyone is on top of their tasks with an eerily delightful attitude; it hardly seems like work. Jenna J. Ross finished her scenes yesterday, yet brought champagne to surprise everyone wrapping up. The kitchen is alive, a chatterbox of crappy shoots in Brazil and practical jokes played with Photoshop.

If the kitchen is the heart of “Homecoming”, then the adjoining room acts as the brain. Skow has commandeered the opulent dining room as his editing suite where dailies are checked. Cameraman Mike Towers, a being of pure positive energy, smiles over his shoulder. They sit beneath enormous crystal chandeliers and towering paintings, like a Notorious B.I.G. video, only way more boring.

When pressed about Measure B, the law that will require condoms to be worn in porn shoots within LA County, Skow tosses a palm in the air. “It doesn’t really change anything. Everybody’s just going to be shooting outside of town. It’s going to court.” He sighs, leaning back from his MacBook with a roll of the eyes, “A lot of people don’t know the specifics of these measures. They’re ridiculous. They want (the crew) wearing safety goggles. They want us wearing masks. The crew has to wear gloves.” He concludes, chuckling, “We’re supposed to professionally disinfect the clothing the talent arrives in.”

Back in the upstairs bedroom, the talent’s clothing is no longer an issue. The newly shemaled Ralph Long is stripped down, the only hair on his body in the form of a gaudy blonde wig. “Ralph Naired himself this week,” grins Mike Towers. The director chimes in, “Most guys in this industry have less hair than the women.” Trying to get an optimal angle for his choreography with Casey, Ralph wrestles with his artificial coif. “It’s hard with all this hair n’shit,” he grunts, maintaining composure in his netherparts. Casey grins from the mattress, “Now you know how the girls feel.”

Indeed, the hard-lined establishment of male dominance in the industry seems to be turned on its ear here, with the male lead emasculated both on and off camera. “B. Skow has to leave for ‘the pop’”, Ralph playfully laments to the crew. “He gets inside of my head, man…like a Jedi voice, I can’t finish in front of him.” In terms of the pre-shoot photos, the “pop” is actually just Cetaphil, a moisturizer that shemps for semen on numerous porn sets. Mike Towers applies it to Casey’s belly with a clinical splurt, “They should give us an endorsement, we’ve made these guys tons of money.”

While a partnership with the likes of Johnson & Johnson seems dubious, a Girlfriends production goes through its fair share of bathroom products. Casey, absent during Ralph’s earlier rant about set hygiene, reaches for them and sneers, “Hey, these baby wipes are dry!” The entire crew bursts into laughter. Ralph Long just smiles and gets back into position on the bed. He has proven, once again, that he’s on top of the situation.