Eeep – this is so exciting! We’ve been dying to talk to Buck Angel for a long time. After following his work and activism we have like many others fallen head over heels in love with his charisma, charm, passion and his work for trans rights.
Buck is an adult film maker, a trans man, an award winning porn star (branding himself “the man with a pussy”), a motivational speaker, and an activist who push for trans sex positivity. He fights for the right to be sexual – not only the right to be accepted. As one of the brightest, freshest voices in the adult industry right now, we talked to him about his relentless drive, using adult films as a tool for sexual liberation, trans visibility, the importance of sex positivity, and revolutionizing the porn world. Ladies and gentlemen, the amazing: Buck Angel.
“I started my work in pornography and soon become famous as The Man with a Pussy”
Hi Buck! How are you and how’s your day going?
Well, right now I am on a plane to London where I will work for two weeks. I just came from working in NYC for one week. So that said I feel pretty good and excited about life. I like to start my days by waking up with the intention of creating something beautiful for the world. I believe that attitude is everything, so even if you have a million things on your mind and you are feeling overwhelmed, or just too of touch, the best thing to do is slow down for a moment and try to be grateful for what you have right now.
For those that don’t know you, who are you and what do you do?
For some reason I always try to think what’s the best way for me to describe myself, because now I do so many different things, but to the people who have no clue I would say this. I am a filmmaker, speaker and human rights/sex activist. My background is that I was born a female and had a sex change to become a man over 20 years ago. The thing that I am most known for is that I never had bottom surgery and I kept my vagina. I started my work in pornography and soon become famous as “The man with a pussy” I was the first trans man to ever win an AVN award for my work in bringing trans male sexuality to mainstream porn as well as creating the conversation in educational settings about trans male sexuality. Today I speak all over the world about trans men and sex.
“I used to really despise my body sexually before I transitioned and so when I finally could connect with my body sexually it was like some kind of spiritual awakening.”
Your sex-positivity and lust for life really shines through the lens. It’s awesome when you say you identify as a pervert, and that you think a pervert is someone who’s in touch with his or her sexuality. Where does your sex-positivity come from?
Thank you so much, that means lots to me. Because I really want my films to reflect my positive attitude about being a trans person and really connecting with your body. The body many of us have disliked sexually before and even sometimes after transition. I used to really despise my body sexually before I transitioned and so when I finally could connect with my body sexually it was like some kind of spiritual awakening. It really helped me to feel more confident, not just sexually but everyday as I walked the world. It was just such an amazing feeling after hating myself for so long the funny thing is that I chose to make pornography as a way of educating and really just putting myself out there to show people that I wasn’t a freak, and it worked!
What was your relationship with porn as young man?
Great question. You know, I was a really sexual kid. I played lots of sex games, as kids do I think. I remember my dad had the inside of the garage door covered with playboy centerfolds and so I would sneak in there when no one was home and masturbate. There wasn’t really porn in my house only playboy and sports illustrated which always had hot photos of women in bathing suits. I became an excessive masturbator with these magazines. So I would say that magazine porn played a big part in my early sexual awakenings.
“I just wanted to make porn, never in million years did I think I would create or be the guy I am today.”
The trailer for Mr Angel: The Movie.
When and how did you decide to start doing your own porn?
I started in 2002 with this idea to create a website devoted to “Buck Angel – The Man with the Pussy” because I was working behind the scenes in porn producing fetish films and also working with a trans woman porn star. That was when I noticed that there were no trans males in porn. That’s when the light bulb in my head went off and I remember saying to my friend that I had this idea to make porn as the man with a pussy, he said to me “dude, what an awesome idea – you will change the world!” which back then I thought was funny because that was never my intention. I just wanted to make porn, never in million years did I think I would create or be the guy I am today.
Do you have a favorite film from your own production? Why?
That’s a difficult question because I really do like most of my films, but I guess if I have to pick I would say Buckback Mountain as my favorite film that I am in, but then I have the Sexing The Trans Man XXX series which I love even more. That is because i really love that I decided to make this type of porn that I call docu-porn. For me being able to bring other trans men into the sex world with respect to how they feel about themselves is so powerful for me. That they get to represent themselves the way they want too. I feel very honored to have so many people tell me that they love it and that it has helped them feel so much more comfortable in their bodies as well as sexually.
The mood in your films is very sexy and comfortable. How do you create that comfortable and open atmosphere on set?
Thank you! Yes this is super important not only for me but for my guys. Most of these guys have never done any porn before or for that matter even been in front of a camera talking about the relationship to their bodies sexually now after the change. So I knew that I really wanted them to be comfortable so they would open up for me and just be super willing to talk and be sexual. The best way to do this was to just have me and the subject in the room and no one else. I also try to make them not feel intimidated by me, so I remove my shirt and get comfortable with them. After the initial questions I dive deeper into more sexual questions and that’s when the magic happens. I just really love this series so much.
“They want to ‘normalize’ us – so I guess that means not talking about our genitals or sex. I believe this to be very dangerous on many levels. So that’s when I said to myself ‘I worked too hard to make trans sex positive – and I better not stop now'”
What are your plans for 2016?
Oh wow, this year is going to be one of my best for sure. I have three major projects in the works that are going to revolutionize the porn world. I wish I could tell you but I cannot and you will see very soon. For years I was trying to distance myself from my pornography work because I felt it was holding me back from doing many of the mainstream speaking jobs that I get and it was, but just recently I realized how important my sex work is and especially I believe for the trans world, This is to say that as you know the transgender community is expanding at a rapid rate. It’s the new hot topic, but in that I noticed that no one wants to talk about sex. I get left out of much of the mainstream conversation now because of my sex work. They want to “normalize” us and so I guess that means not talking about our genitals or sex. I believe this to be very dangerous on many levels. So that’s when I said to myself that I worked too hard to make trans sex positive and I better not stop now.
You’ve done so much for trans visibility. What are your hopes for trans people in 2016? In general and with regards to sexual freedom and representation?
My hopes are that we stop desexualizing ourselves and learn to embrace our bodies. We don’t have to have bodies like everyone else and we can show that our bodies are beautiful too. I really want to emphasize again how important sex and transition are. I believe its the thing that finally made me love myself today. The emails I get from guys who have learned as well to love themselves through sex are amazing. So I know how this can be a great a and positive part of transition.
“These guys are so brave to get naked for me and talk about such personal things”
How do you feel when working with men who for whatever reason have not been able to have surgery or hormone treatment?
I make a very big effort to include every type of trans man in my series. So I have lots of experience with many of these guys. Their voices are so important because right now in the USA many men are suffering because of the lack of funds to get surgery or hormones and they really have to learn to embrace what they have now until they can get to the place to finally be able to have surgery and hormones. These guys are so brave to get naked for me and talk about such personal things, all because they want the world to see the different layers of trans men. Some of these guys do not want surgery and so this is how they want to represent. I feel so lucky that these guys trust me enough and I get to showcase them, this can help some guys who have body issues.
Any advice on how you think cis normative adult films can be more sexually liberated and more open to transmen and transwomen?
Well that probably won’t happen for a while and not because these companies don’t want to but porn is a business like everything else and you are going to produce films that your customers want. So if their customers have no desire to see trans people then why would you put them in your films? I actually did a crossover film with Titan media which is a very big mainstream gay cis company. But it was more like making a cult sex film than actually breaking down barriers and I knew that. The thing is that if the customers start to tell these companies that’s what they want to see then these companies will make a big effort to produce them.
Thanks for your time Buck! We love your work and can’t wait to see what you will do in the future.
Photos custody of Buck Angel.