Interview with Sky Deep

"It’s gotta be a queer vampire porn!”

6. Nov. 2016
Sky Deep © Eli Eichler

The vampire porn Enactone is one of the award-winning movies of this year's Pornfilmfestival. We spoke with director Sky Deep about the surprise success of her first film

Nov. 6, 2016 – Although DJ, producer and musician Sky Deep never expected it herself, the accolades given at Kino Moviemento during the 11th Pornfilmfestival Berlin proved her directorial debut was onto something. The first-time filmmaker’s queer vampire porn Enactone (trailer) became the film to see at this year’s festival, reinforced by winning “best feature” at the closing ceremony. In Berlin since 2014, the former Los Angelena and New Yorker recently made a name for herself in Berlin curating Reclaim the Beats in September, a festival focused on music created by black, POC and queer people. Now she's catalyzing visibility for these groups in her work as a pornographer. Walter Crasshole spoke with her about her film's background, body politics and the role of porn in the queer community

Sky, where did you get the idea for the film? I’m really into vampire movies and shows and such. I really look out for them. I’m really into Underworld, Blade… I like this comic-book kind of feel. And as an actor, I’ve always wanted to be in a vampire movie. But that didn’t happen and I moved to Berlin. I was going for a walk with a friend one day in this cemetery over by Südstern, and one of the mausoleums had broken glass, and I could see inside. All the glass in the mausoleum was stained blue. So when the sun was shining, it looked like how a black light looks – this ghastly blue light. I was psyched. In that moment, I was like, I have to shoot a movie here.

Did you always want this be a porn as well? A good friend and I talked about all this. She even introduced me to the bondage workshops. I said, “Sara, this cemetery is near my house and I’m going to make a vampire movie. And it’s going to be a queer vampire movie.” She said “Oh, it’s gotta be a queer vampire porn!” And so it was born.

Why do you think queer pornography is important today?
I’ve been dibbling and dabbling around porn in both a hetero place and an LGBT space, and then a queer space on and off for the last 25 years. And for me, the most important part, if we’re talking about queer, it’s just stepping away from the norms and the things people have been taught since their Barbie and Ken baby days. I never had this intention to make a political movie. I know a lot of people would say, if it’s queer, it’s political. For me, when I’m thinking queer, I’m thinking breaking up definitions and usually more from a personal space. For me queer pornography is an open space, where we’re coming together and we all decide who we are and what we’re up for and how we want to identify.

What do you think its place in the Pornfilmfestival is? This is my first time involved with this festival, so I don’t have anything to compare it to. I’ve never been involved with a porn festival anywhere. But I liked at least that there’s a strong representation. And the importance of the role of the “other”, and you’re not that far from it. Nobody’s far from it. What I’m saying is that a festival like this and the space that it allows for queers to fully express and embody and stand tall in this power – it can transcend into every part of life. It translates into how you walk down the fucking street.

How do you feel about being a woman and POC in pornography?
When it comes to porn and being a black body with a vagina, I often assume that people will be turned off. Unfortunately. I don’t like that. But that’s because mainstream or the people that have the power often prefer somebody not like me. I’m always the best friend or the good buddy or the funny one. We’re all conditioned from birth in a certain way. I’m not saying people are trying to be like this. Although some clearly are. Others are the first to say, “I’m not like that.” As a dark-skinned black person who doesn’t have a model body, I expected people to be just like, oh yeah, what a cute film you made! Really powerful! Thanks! Inspiring! But what I’m really excited about is that other people who look like me – queer people of different backgrounds, trans, not trans – cam up to me and said, “This was a great film, I enjoyed it.” And that was all the cookies for me.

How do you hope the film will be received elsewhere? I don’t want this to turn into some sort of jerk-off fantasy for someone that’s like objectifying or exoticizing us. This was my thought from the beginning, I don’t want this to turn into one of those ghetto-booty joke movies. Even with music, as soon as you’re black, they want to put you into an urban line-up. I want this to be a serious film. This is a goddamn film, bitches!

Interview: Walter Crasshole