WORDS BY KHALID STRICKLAND a.k.a. BLACK PACINO
PHOTOS & VIDEOS PROVIDED BY INN OF SIN
Fellas, meet the man that has your dream job.
Rico Shades is active in the porn game as both a player and an owner. Like many professional studs, Mr. Shades is well-compensated to smash a bevy of fine starlets. As if that weren’t good enough, he executed the middleman by producing, editing and distributing his adult films. In addition to giving Sara Jay, Kelly Divine, Eva Evangelina and Mika Tan “da’ bizness” on-camera, Ricardo Shades is in the executive’s chair handling business of other sorts.
Based in Las Vegas, Shades and his Inn of Sin crew own a dozen adult sites, including the popular Backside Bonanza , My Deep Dark Secret and Cum Thirsty Cougars. Shades also runs websites for notable adult-film actresses, further enhancing their brand. Like any championship team, the Inn of Sin roster includes a winning balance of rookie talent and seasoned vets. There’s no shortage of ladies willing to work with a well-liked and enterprising guy like Rico Shades. So the beat marches on as the bread rolls in.
I like to chop it up with self-made bosses, it’s educational. So I got on the horn with Mr. Shades for a thorough Q&A session. Among many things, we discussed tricks of the trade, starlets who shun interracial scenes and which porno beast laid it on him the hardest.
Go downstairs in the adult section to peep our interview. Then sample the Inn of Sin with spicy photos and video clips.
Black Pacino: Tell me some of your business influences?
Rico Shades: Lyor Cohen. I love his take no bullshit, “you’re either part of my team or not part of my team” style.
Pacino: What would you like to change in your industry?
Shades: Definitely piracy. We’ve got good counsel so it hasn’t affected us as much but there are literally companies that have closed their doors or that used to do six titles a month that are now doing one. All of that equates to fewer job opportunities for talent.
Pacino: What are you reading?
Shades: I have a problem with people who only read the fucking sports section or The Source. You learn what you’re exposed to. Period. I like Straight from the Gut by Jack Welch, the former head of General Electric. It’s par for the course reading for anyone entertaining running something.
Pacino: What are some misconceptions about your line of work?
Shades: There’s a couple but one I’d really like to explain is a lot of these people from the outside looking in, they have this misconception that because some of these ladies do porn that they have no scruples. I’ve seen dames totally tell Tom, Dick, Harry and Joe Baller that he ain’t gonna approach her any kind of way ‘cuz he got coin in his pocket or whatever the case may be.
Don’t just make the assumption that how it’s goin’ down on the film is how it’s goin’ down off the film. That’s not always the case. But most importantly all of them have some kind of business, for the most part, that they handle outside of the porn film. So that’s definitely one of the biggest misconceptions. Like it’s some 24-hour orgy and nothing could be farther from the case.
As far as on the other side, a lot of people think it’s easy. My answer to that is, there’s a reason why you see new girls all the time but if you watch porn, you’ll happen to notice that you see the same guys in the videos. At the end of the day some of the stuff that looks the best is the least comfortable. It’s not easy bangin’ in certain positions and it’s not for everybody.
Pacino: Every dude in America has thought about having or wished they had your job. If somebody wants to become an adult film actor, what are some of the things they’ve gotta be prepared to do?
Shades: At the end of the day, everybody’s situation is different. How one guy gets in, another guy gets in an entirely different way. My advice basically is to start your own. I mean, that’s what I did. I’m never going to be in the position where I’ma be at some producer’s doorstep begging for a shot; that’s ridiculous to me. If it comes down to that I’ll pack this shit up and do something else. The easiest way in is to either start your own and if you don’t have the finances for that, I would say the next easiest way is to have a super-hot girl that says she will only shoot with you.
But as far as the guy is concerned, at the end of the day everything in this business costs money. So if you got a situation where you got a producer… you’re paying for makeup. You’re paying for location by the hour. You may have some of your crew there and you’re paying them and what have you. When all of that stuff is at stake you cannot afford to have some guy showing up who’s never banged before. Hey, bruh, in this business… no money, no pop, no scene. So at the end of the day when you’ve got that kind of money on the line you’re gonna go with the performer that’s tried and true. Period. Now you may try a new guy in a two-on-one or three-on-one scene, so that if way if the guy freezes up and fails, you still have two other people that can get the scene done.
Pacino: What do you think of “escorting?”
Shades: As I mentioned previously production is down across the board and unfortunately a derivative of that has been a lot of girls hooking to make bills. I’m not being judgmental because at the end of the day I don’t pay “X” girls rent. However, I really don’t think they want to be in the position of working on a set with people they know versus going to meet complete strangers in some instances. The bills don’t stop coming and some girls are up against the wall to maintain.
I think it always existed but during good times it was a bit more covert. A girl may have had a handful of well-to-do sugar daddies or people she seen in certain cities on dance gigs, but now it has become so widespread. It’s almost more of surprise to find girls that don’t escort than those that do. It used to be girls done porn full time and escorted on the side, but for some girls that is completely the opposite now.
I just hope no one gets hurt, there are some crazy people out there… or brings an STD back to the talent pool by dealing with one of their “regulars.” If you’re going to do it you should at the very least have the common sense and professional courtesy for the rest of the talent pool, to make the non-tested people you deal with wear a condom. I do find it interesting that some guys with porn girlfriends have an issue with them doing interracial scenes but absolutely no qualms with them escorting. Funny, huh?
Pacino: So since the beginning of your career, you’ve been shooting for yourself? You haven’t shot for any other companies?
Shades: I have done some other stuff for Anabolic, Elegant Angel and what have you, but I’ve never been under contract or “hired-out talent.” The scenes that I’ve done for other people were basically like more, you know, “buddy directors” of mine. I get a lot of chicks that request me. And that’s another thing. Girls do have a request list. There are certain dudes that they’ll ask for and want to work with.
Pacino: Right. So that’s why you’ll see Miko Lee with Lex Steele in like twenty scenes together.
Shades: Yeah, ‘cause Miko is fire (laughs).
Pacino: Speaking of favorite lists, who’s on your favorite list? I know you might not want to offend any of the ladies but is there anyone you can narrow down?
Shades: Wow. That’s a rough one. I’d say Ann Marie… she’s got lots of energy. Very good girl. Kelly Divine. Myself and Kelly work together; she’s a personal friend. Gianna (Michaels) was a lot of fun. She doesn’t have the atypical porn body, Gianna’s a big girl. But I love Gianna. Charey Chase, she’s a monster.
Pacino: You work with Mika Tan before?
Shades: I have worked with Mika and you know what… before I get in trouble… please put Mika Tan in with my favorites (laughs)
Pacino: Shit, I’m talking from an outsider’s point-of-view but I imagine she’s got to be in there somewhere (laughs). You worked on both sides of the camera. As far as for females, what makes a great performer in your book?
Shades: From a female perspective, most definitely ENERGY. I can teach you to open up and how to moan and different things of that nature. But the one thing I can’t give you is energy. If you put in that, I’ll get the rest out of you (laughs). I really like chicks that are humble and want to learn. And frankly, girls that are naturally sexual. There are a lot of girls in this business that are in it for a paycheck unfortunately. And there are a lot of girls that are really just sexual people and whatever money you give ‘em is a bonus. I like that. Like Gianna is gonna fuck regardless, you know what I’m sayin? (laughs) Any money that’s around, okay so be it.
Pacino: As far as male adult actors, everybody has a rep. Sean Michaels is the gentleman. Wesley Pipes is the shit-talker. Brian Pumper is the rapper. What is the Rico Shades angle?
Shades: I guess the best way I can describe that is… I’m such a clean-cut brother, you know what I mean? I just carry myself a certain way. Now, the biggest compliment that was ever given to me was from a lady by the name of Kelly Wells. She actually told me one time that the reason she loves working with me so much is, “You can always tell the guy in this business who can get a date outside of this business.” I’ll never forget those words.
Pacino: Hmmmm. That’s deep. I know about Kelly Wells, she’s a wild girl.
Shades: Yeah, Kelly’s a beast (laughs).
Pacino: Speaking of beasts, who really laid it on you? Not that you’d ever cry out for mercy but who really laid it down?
Shades: Man, I’ll tell you… Ava Devine will put you to sleep!! (Laughs) Ava Devine will make you tap out, bruh. I say that with no hesitation. I will tell you right now Ava Devine is a fucking monster!
I say my favorite girls that I’ve worked with… some I haven’t… are girls that are in that sexual beast type mode. Ava Devine, Ann Marie, Gianna, Sandra Romain, Adrianna Nicole… I mean I love girls like that.
Pacino: Sandra Romain! Oh my Lord. That’s my bitch.
Shades: Or Tori Lane, good friend of mine. Never worked with Tori but I love her to death. Real good girl. Girls like that… if I could just roll all of those women up into one, that is porn to me! Everybody else is just some wanna-be model.
Pacino: Why don’t you try and get Alexis Texas? Maybe you can be the one to introduce her to the brothas (laughs). She doesn’t do interracial scenes.
Shades: Actually, let’s touch on that real quick. First of all, I have a policy in this regard. I know Alexis but more importantly I know her boyfriend Mr. Pete. He’s a real good dude, Pete’s cool as hell. But at the end of the day, my attitude on that is this. My mind’s entirely on the many girls that want to work with me, that love working with me, to be worryin’ about some broad that doesn’t. I don’t believe in puttin’ no chick up on no pedestal like that. Now that said, I think a lot of brothers on the flipside, they go a lil’ overboard with that shit. If she doesn’t, that don’t mean nothin’. At the end of the day, that’s her pussy, do with it as you will (laughs). I don’t get hung up on that.
And number two, I think we give it too much power by making it a big deal. In other words, when girls such as her do their first interracial pic it’s like “(She’s) takin’ the big black long cock…” I mean… why the fuck can’t it just be a scene? You know what I mean? So dead that shit.
At the end of the day, me pushing for Alexis Texas… in my mind that’s kind of slighting the girls that are really out there doing their thing in interracial. I’d rather talk them up than talk Alexis down. If she winds up doing IR, then she winds up doing IR. But she may find if she does wind up doing IR, her IR paper might not be that big. You know? She may have certain Black producers like, “Hey bitch, fuck it now. I don’t want your washed-up ass now.” (Laughs) That’s possible.
But I don’t play that, bruh. And I don’t believe in paying no damn girl extra ‘cause it’s a Black dick either. I don’t play that shit. At the end of a day, a dick’s a dick. I done seen muthafuckin’ Chris Charming, there’s some Whiteboys that got some hams in their damn pants and you ain’t charging them extra. Uh uh. No no no, I don’t play that.
Pacino: It’s the Black tax, man.
Shades: And I understand girls they have this mentality sometimes of where, “It’s my first anal, it’s my first interracial, it’s my first this, that and the third.” Well, I’ll tell you what… I’ll be the second. Let somebody else pay you for your first.
And to expand on the interracial answer, I hear the “it’ll hurt my career argument” and that’s just total bullshit to me. The last I checked Jenna Haze was a mega star, Belladonna was a mega star, Lisa Ann does Sarah Palin and Eminem videos, Bree Olson is a contract girl and Sasha Grey has not only super porn success, but she is doing mainstream joints and one of the most recognizable brands in this game. All of these chicks have banged and continue to bang, plenty of bruthas.
I’m not saying go do some ghetto-ass shit but there are some very tasteful bruthas doing their thing without all of the shock and awe bravado. At the end of the day, the only thing that stops girls from getting work is being a bullshit performer. If you are bringing the heat, you will get bookings, no matter what black dick you’ve sucked: PERIOD.
Links of interest:
And now, Thirst Mob…
Here’s a taste of what awaits you at various Inn of Sin websites, illustrated in full color:
Nothing exceeds like excess, so let’s push things into high gear.
Here are some video clips from Mr. Shades TV.
There’s more where this came from at Backside Bonanza, My Deep Dark Secret, Cum Thirsty Cougars and other Inn of Sin sites. But I’ma break you off a lil’ chunk of the crack right now… just a sample to get you fiendin’.
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