Fleshpot on 42nd St: Who Was Laura Cannon?

Fleshpot on 42nd St:  Who Was Laura Cannon?

Laura Cannon was an actress. A real one. She was also one of the earliest of the regular New Yorkers who made up the nascent adult film industry in 1970.

She made around 30 films and loops, and worked for notable directors like Joe Sarno, Gerard Damiano, Andy Milligan, and Leonard Kirtman.

But watching her on-screen is a strange experience.

Laura was no circus trick show pony like Linda Lovelace, or uninhibited hippy like Marilyn Chambers.

She seemed distant, detached, melancholy even. It was as if she didn’t belong on the screen. And yet she made films consistently over several years.

So who was this unlikely, unusual and unexpected porn actress?

Ten years ago, The Rialto Report set out to find more about her. We contacted anyone we could find who might know her. We made calls, sent emails, and left messages. We wanted to seek answers to the questions we had. The whys, the hows, but mostly the who.

And we spoke to Laura Cannon herself.


Who was Laura Cannon? Her familiar image flickers on the screen in intimate and indiscrete poses. She bares everything yet still seems an enigma. How do you get behind an image?

This much we know: Laura Cannon was born Janet Lynn Channin on 6 April 1947, in Evanston, Illinois. She had two older brothers and her family moved to La Jolla in California when she was a young girl. She graduated from La Jolla High School in 1965.

Her 1964 High School yearbook photo shows a serious, not unattractive teenage girl, but with features that differ from the later person on the screen. Maybe it’s because she is still a girl, but her nose appears larger and less defined.

We spoke to two of her classmates. Both remembered Janet clearly. She was sweet, shy and self-conscious. She was friendly but not afraid to speak her mind when challenged. And she came alive on a theater stage. Performing allowed her to lose herself in a part and forget about inhibitions. The make-believe transformed her. She lived for the pretend. She preferred the fiction.

She had a boyfriend or two in high school, but nothing serious. Some people said they found it difficult to get close to her.

When her school friends had shared their memories, they turned to questions.

“What happened to her? Didn’t she move to New York to be an actress?”

Janet Channin


Jonathan (Janet’s boyfriend):

I met her in New York when she was 21 or 22. She had a place at the NYU Tisch Graduate Acting School. Tisch had only just started around the mid-1960s but it was already a prestigious program. There were only about 20 students in each year. Christopher Guest (‘Spinal Tap’) was in her year. Billy Crystal and Michael McKean were also there at that time. I remember going to see her in the school plays they put on. She knew all those guys pretty well.


Jane O’Reilly (friend):

I worked on costumes and make-up for student productions at Tisch. That’s how I met her. We became friends and drinking buddies.



She was living with her brother who was studying art at NYU. She could be difficult to get to know, and she seemed to have a fear of intimacy. She didn’t like crowds. She didn’t open up much, and I always got the feeling that she was hiding some kind of pain.


Jane O’Reilly:

Janet was charming on stage. She was a good actress. Not the best actress, but there was a strange conviction to her performances that was disarming and endearing. It was quite compelling to watch her.



I first saw her when she answered an ad for modelling. The ad had been placed by Shelley Karpel. Shelley was an old-school cheesecake photographer. He had contacts with some cheap New York nudie magazines like Rascal and Frolic, and he’d sell them spreads. I was studying photography, so I used to follow him around and help him shoot girls.

Mostly we’d shoot a lot of struggling students, trying to raise cash to pay their rent. I guess Janet fell into that category. She wanted to act. And acting wasn’t making her rich.

She and I started to date off and on after that.

Laura CannonJanet, on the cover of Frolic (November 1972)


Jane O’Reilly:

Janet went to auditions and got a few tiny parts in movies that were shot in New York. This was the late 60s and there were quite a few independent films being shot locally. It was hard to break in though. She was still a student and mostly she just got work as an extra.

I remember one night she told me that she’d done a nude photo shoot for this old guy. She looked embarrassed. I couldn’t tell if she was uncomfortable because she regretted what she’d done… or whether she feared my reaction. Either way, I know that she went back and did more pictures with the same photographer. We didn’t talk about it after that. Neither of us brought it up.



Janet was a beautiful girl, a real head-turner, but she wasn’t a natural model. She just didn’t believe that she was attractive, so she found it difficult to relax and look comfortable.

I also persuaded her to let me take pictures of her in my apartment. She was more comfortable with me, so they were better.

Janet Channin

Laura Cannon

Janet Channin


Jane O’Reilly:

She had this thing about her nose. I mean, she was gorgeous but she thought her nose would prevent her from getting proper acting parts. She was desperate to get enough money together to pay for a nose job.

The modeling work finally provided the money for her nose job. She had the operation and was proud of the result. The only problem was that she became paranoid that someone would hit her nose by accident and mess it up…



Shelley and I did a few photo shoots with her. We took some shots in Prospect Park in Brooklyn and in a few apartments, but I don’t know if we ever sold them.


Janet looks at the camera. She knows it’s a game and she knows the rules, but that doesn’t mean that she knows how to play. The nude photos show someone who wishes they were acting a different part. Instead she has the most difficult job of just being herself.


Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St



Shelley’s pictures were mostly black and white. I’d develop them at his place and then we’d shop them out to magazine editors. All these places had offices within a few blocks of each other.

Shelley lived in the Camelot building at 301 West 45th Street. That was a crazy place. It was in a scuzzy, sleazy area, hookers were lined up along the wall outside, and scary-looking pimps were never far away. I tried to get in and out of that building as quickly as I could, and not hang around.

Shelley’s place was a trip as well. It always had a mixture of arty people and sex-industry folk hanging out.

One of the people I met there was this glamor-puss ex-sex film actress turned agent named Linda Boyce.

Linda BoyceLinda Boyce, in ‘Monique My Love‘ (1969)


Linda Boyce (actress, agent):

I appeared in a number of films when I was too young to know any better… I remember people like Michael and Roberta Findlay, the Amero brothers, Joe Sarno. They were all making these cheap sex movies. The money was good, and it was easy work, but I soon started looking for a way to get out.

I set up an agency for actors. I did it with a friend and we called it ‘Boyce Stone’. I already knew everyone in the business so it was easy to do. I found actors for the films, magazine shoots, modelling assignments, you name it.

The guy I started it with didn’t do anything so soon I ran it all myself out of my apartment at the Camelot.



Sometimes Shelley and I shot girls in his apartment. Or at Linda’s place. Linda had this big black Afghan Hound that Janet adored so we shot a spread or two there with her once when we had nowhere else to go.

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon


Linda Boyce:

When I was acting, and when I was an agent, the sex was strictly soft. That means it wasn’t for real. That was enough for us. We weren’t interested in going further. In fact we were afraid of the consequences of going further, and none of us wanted to get involved in anything more. We had no idea that it would eventually change into hardcore. No idea at all.

I had a few regular clients. People like Shelley Karpel and Sam Menning for photo shoots. And a filmmaker called Leonard Kirtman that I provided regular talent to.



Kirtman was a burly, ex-taxi driver who had somehow convinced some backers that he could make soft-core sex films way cheaper than anyone else. His formula was simple: he would shoot two or three films at the same time, usually over a weekend. He would use the same skeleton crew and actors for every shoot. And he would give each film a suggestive and salacious title – usually involving a bad pun. Like ‘Around the World in 80 Ways’.

I don’t think he even knew how to make a film. So he used people who wanted to break into film. I remember this artist named Armand Weston that made some of his films, and a cameraman named Joao.


Linda Boyce:

Some of the filmmakers that I knew wanted to be real directors. They tried hard to make their films look good. Leonard Kirtman wasn’t interested in making anything artistic. He just wanted to make as much money as possible for himself. That was fine by me.



Linda suggested to Janet that she should go and see Kirtman. Kirtman was straight with Janet. He told her that she wouldn’t get paid much, perhaps $50 a day, but that she’d learn about how to make a movie and could practice her acting in front of a film camera.

Janet was excited to make films and Kirtman seemed to like using her. It seemed like every weekend in 1970 she worked for him.

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon


Kim Pope (actress):

I met Janet on the set of a few of the early films I made. We bonded. We had both done a lot of theater acting, summer stock, and so on. We understood what each other’s lives were like. And we weren’t quite sure why we were making these strange sex films!

Kim PopeKim Pope (left) and Janet



No one was friendly with Kirtman. He wasn’t that kind of guy, but he recognized that I could be of some value to him so he let me hang around on set. I took hundreds of stills that he used for publicity.


Janet appeared in a succession of films for Kirtman and his acolytes over the next year – including The Bed Spread (1969), Catch 69 (1970), Lip Service (1970), School of Hard Knocks (1970), Secretaries Spread (1970), Wall Street Walker (1970), Love Thy Neighbor (1970), Exchange Student (1970), Use the Back Door (1971), Vice Versa! (1971), and Pay the Baby Sitter (1971).

The films called for minimal acting and a lot of undressing. Janet became more comfortable. The films became more explicit.

The Bed SpreadJanet on the one-sheet for The Bed Spread (1969)


Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Secretaries SpreadJanet on the one-sheet for Secretaries Spread (1970)


Janet Channin

Janet Channin

Use The Back DoorJanet on the one-sheet for Use The Back Door (1971)


Laura Cannon

Leonard KirtmanJanet on the one-sheet for Vice Versa! (1971)


Laura Cannon

Laura Cannon



She wasn’t as uncomfortable doing nude scenes I guess because she’d done the photo shoots. But the sexual scenes weren’t as easy for her. Kirtman used the same actors again and again which made it more bearable. I tried talking to her about it but she just avoided the subject.

The problem was that the films were becoming more and more sexual.


Tallie Cochrane (actress, agent):

I was living in New York and married to Patrick Wright. Patrick was an actor who’d starred in some Russ Meyer films. We bribed a doorman to get us an apartment on 45th and 8th, which was the Camelot Building. Our apartment was next door to this great lady, Linda Boyce.

Patrick wanted to get back into the movies and Linda had this kind of soft core agency, so she showed us the ropes, telling us all kinda great stories, and set us up with people to see for interviews, that sort of thing.

Then one day Linda informed me she was getting married to this well-off man in the garment business, and she was just gonna throw her agency away.  I said “Linda, give it to me, let me do something with it.”

She said, “Here!”, and gave me her rolodex and a pile of papers.

Tallie CochraneTallie Cochrane


Linda Boyce (actress, agent):

I didn’t like the way the business was going. It was becoming more sexual and hardcore, so it was a good chance to get out. Plus I was getting married. I never looked back.


Tallie Cochrane:

I got on the phone and I called everybody. I told them I existed and they all bought it and, next thing I knew, I was in business. I didn’t know what the hell I was doing… but I was in business.

Within about a week or two at the most, the industry went hardcore. I could shit or get off the pot, so I decided to go with the flow. In a manner of speaking.



It was like… one day the sex scenes were simulated and then they were for real. It was difficult for Janet I guess, and it was definitely difficult for our relationship.

A different crowd of people started to make films. I didn’t like it any more and stopped my involvement. Janet continued. I still don’t know why.

So we broke up.


Tallie Cochrane:

Janet was one of girls that came over from Linda to my agency. She was a sweet, pretty girl who everyone liked. Oh sure, she would always complain that she wanted to do films with less sex, but I told her, “Honey – if you take the sex out of these films, you haven’t got much left…”

I set her up with Harry Reems on a film that was shot in Connecticut.


Harry Reems (actor) (from ‘Here Comes Harry Reems’ (1975), by Harry Reems):

Dark Dreams’ was a big leap forward. We stayed in the house in Connecticut for six days.

Not least of the reasons why ‘Dark Dreams’ was such a gas was a girl named Laura Kannon (sic). She was magnificent, impossible, and ridiculous. And I fell in love with her that week in Connecticut.

How to describe Laura?

Laura was actually a princess – a Jewish American Princess, commonly abbreviated as JAP. She had a glorious Greek-goddess body and a nose job she thought was the most perfect piece of surgery in the world. She only fell in love with men who told her she had an exquisite nose, possibly the most exquisite nose in the world.


Tina Russell (from ‘Porno Star (1973), by Tina Russell):

(Note: Janet /Laura Cannon is referred to as ‘Lisa Daniels’ in Tina Russell’s autobiography)

Lisa is definitely, in my opinion, in many ways the most beautiful girl who ever graced the porn screen. She has an incredibly muscular, yet feminine body with medium-sized breasts which stand up and straight out. With an angelic face and eyes that radiate purity, she has the look that would drive any ‘dirty old man’ – or for that matter, any ‘dirty young man’ – up the wall.

If a backer, director, or producer starts getting obnoxious, Lisa is definitely a good person to have on the set. She will not tolerate any ego games from anyone. She is also totally honest and will tell anyone exactly what she thinks of him. After a backer’s ego has been deflated by Lisa. He is definitely not going to bother anyone else on the set.

Lisa quickly became one of our closest friends. To this day, we still love her. Jason, over the years, became the brother with whom she could confide, including those feelings which she could not talk to her real brother-roommate about.

Laura Cannon


Fred Lincoln (actor):

Janet?! Shit, I had almost forgotten about her until you mentioned her! What a beautiful girl. We had so much fun with her. She could be a ball-breaker, but she’d melt and laugh if you didn’t take her seriously.


Harry Reems (from ‘Here Comes Harry Reems’ (1975), by Harry Reems):

Laura wanted to be bossy. But you’d tell her to shut up and she would. She wanted her own dressing room and bedroom. “Aw, knock it off, Laura.” Laura would knock it off.

In one scene in ‘Dark Dreams’, Kitty Kat and Laura were to cover me with whipped cream and eat it off me.

“Harry, Laura will give you head until you get hard,” said the director.

“What do you mean, give him head?” Laura screamed. “Aren’t you going to roll the cameras? I’m not doing anything off-camera.”


Fred Lincoln:

See… Janet’s thing was acting. She just wanted to act. Well, that and marry a wealthy doctor and live in a big house on Long Island. So for a time she convinced herself that the porno films would give her a grounding as a film actress. And I guess it did.

But then she started making 8mm loops with us… and let me tell you, there wasn’t a lot of acting going on there.


Harry Reems (from ‘Here Comes Harry Reems’, by Harry Reems (1973)):

All the way (to the shoot), Laura was being her absurd, lovable self, alternating loving and hating us, and spewing out her hatred of the business.

“You guys are disgusting with your cocks,” Laura ranted. “All you think about it sex. I’m not going to suck any cocks today, I’m telling you, I don’t care what the loops call for.”


Tina Russell (from ‘Porno Star (1973), by Tina Russell):

Lisa may seem as though she would be quite capable of taking care of herself, but in many ways she is not. She is absolutely the most insecure person I have ever met. She is so sensitive and so filled with pain that to be loved or to be shown any sign of affection is far too painful for her to endure. Any display of affection reminds her subconsciously of the affection that she did not receive as a child – at that point tears begin to well up in her eyes and her face takes on an agonized look.

Excessive insecurity often causes paranoia and Lisa is a classic example. She is uncomfortable in crowds and her acute sense of awareness is always on the alert for any gestures or remark that she might regard as suspicious or aimed at her.


Jason Russell:

I loved Janet but she didn’t make it easy. It was like she wanted to test your patience to see if you’d put up with her. Well, I was willing to invest the time, and she was a sweet, sweet person. I still miss her.

Laura Cannon


Tina Russell (from ‘Porno Star (1973), by Tina Russell):

That lovely creature thinks she is ugly. Her biggest hang-up is the fact that he nose is slightly crooked. After a plastic surgery job, it is so slightly crooked that no one except for Lisa notices it. Nevertheless, she is extremely self-conscious of it.

(Once on set) out of the corner of my eye, I saw the gaffer’s tape peel from the ceiling and the microphone it was holding fall. It happened so quickly that I could not react. With a thud, it hit Lisa’s nose. Lisa began crying and screaming, “My nose! My nose! It’s broken, I heard it crack!” Covering her nose tightly with her hands, she refused to let anyone see it and ran to the bathroom.

Fortunately her nose was not broken, but as the day progressed it began to turn blue and became quite swollen.


The silent 8mm loop flickers into life. A title card appears: ‘Anne’s Holiday’.

Janet walks into shot. She briefly breaks the fourth wall and glances at the camera. She appears to hear instructions from a voice off camera, and reacts accordingly. She is going through the joyless motions.

She retreats into herself. She thinks about the end, and blocks out the means. She survived the photographs. She can get through this film shoot.


Jonathan (Janet’s boyfriend):

I saw her occasionally after we split. She was still making sex films and she was still a grad student at Tisch. She graduated from there in 1971.

The last time we met she’d got a walk-on part in the film ‘The Hospital’ (1971), which was Arthur Hiller’s first film after ‘Love Story’ (1970). I think Christopher Guest and a few other of her acting class were in it as well. I went to see it in the theater but most of their appearances were cut. She was frustrated that people she knew were starting to find success whereas she felt she hadn’t made the same progress.

Laura CannonJanet’s headshot for her mainstream acting resume’


Harry Reems (interviewed in 2008):

I dated Janet a few times. She fascinated me. Beautiful girl. It couldn’t last because she just wouldn’t let anyone close enough to care for her. Looking back though, and with the benefit of hindsight, I think Janet did enjoy sex but there was some reason… some guilt, which prevented her from being able to admit that she liked it. Maybe it was her family, or the way she was raised. Maybe it was just society that told women that if they enjoyed sex they were bad. Who knows? I just know she beat herself up every time, and it was a shame because she should have been less tough on herself.


In October 1971 Janet featured in a Playboy pictorial entitled ‘The Porno Girls’.

The accompanying text read: “Laura Cannon, a product of an upper-middle-class Evanston, Illinois, who unabashedly lists her occupation as ‘sex star,’ appears in New York-made stag films and sexploitation movies. She has also played in summer stock and as Cordelia in an off-Broadway production of King Lear. At 23, Miss Cannon steadfastly refuses to speculate about her motivations: “I find self-analysis a complete waste of time.”

Laura Cannon‘Laura Cannon’ in Playboy (1971)


Having worked solidly for Leonard Kirtman, Janet also worked for other notable directors of the early adult film industry. These included Roberta Findlay (‘Altar of Lust’ (1971)), Joe Sarno (‘The Young, Erotic Fanny Hill’ (1971)), and Gerard Damiano (‘The Magical Ring’ (1971)).


Gerard Damiano (director):

Janet was beautiful, a really beautiful girl. I wanted to use Janet in more films but I couldn’t find her always when I needed her. It was a shame. She could act too.


Jamie Gillis (actor):

People told me Janet didn’t enjoy sex and that it could be difficult to work with her. I didn’t find her to be that way.

I pushed her buttons to see her reaction. She protested loud and long, but I could she I had got under her skin. The more I pushed her, the more she was intrigued… but also the more uncomfortable she was with her own fascination.

I liked her a lot. I wish I had been able to know her better.


Harry Reems (from ‘Here Comes Harry Reems’ (1975), by Harry Reems):

Jamie’s kinkiness so scared Laura Kannon one day that summer that she locked herself into the bedroom and stayed until he had gone. He had been chasing her all over the place trying to kiss her shoes.


Two of Janet’s most notable adult film appearances were at the end of her brief career, ‘Forced Entry’ (1973) and Andy Milligan’s ‘Fleshpot on 42nd Street’ (1973).

Forced EntryJanet on the one-sheet for ‘Forced Entry’ (1973)


Forced EntryJanet in ‘Forced Entry’ (1973)


In ‘Fleshpot on 42nd Street’, Janet (credited as ‘Diana Lewis – the Underground Superstar’) plays Dusty, a woman living in New York who finds herself broke. She agrees to move in with drag queen and prostitute Cherry Lane (Neil Flanagan) but soon she too is turning tricks for cash. Before long Dusty meets Bob (Harry Reems) and the two quickly fall in love but Cherry puts pressure on Dusty to do one final trick.

Fleshpot on 42nd St

Fleshpot on 42nd StJanet in ‘Fleshpot on 42nd Street’ (1973)


Fred Lincoln:

Have you seen ‘Fleshpot on 42nd Street’?! It’s one of the most incredible films that our business made. It’s not really a porn film even though I was in it, and Harry was in it, and Janet was in it. It’s more like a Cassavettes film. I went to see it when it came out, and I thought it was art.

And the strangest thing was that it seemed so autobiographical for Janet.


Janet’s character in ‘Fleshpot on 42nd St’ is at the end of her tether. She had come to New York dreaming of success and a better life, but instead finds herself needing to hustle in New York’s sleazy underbelly in order to survive.

She is sexually confused and frustrated, and starts to provide sexual favors in return for a living. The daily grind gradually takes its toll but she refuses to give up on her hope that her life will turn around.

She sees people around her finding happiness, and clings to her belief that she too can achieve her dreams. Instead she becomes more cynical and bitter and starts to resent and mistrust the people around her while she struggles to retain her humanity and innocence. Eventually the urban jungle ennui and daily hustle becomes the only way of life that she knows.

Janet plays the part to perfection.


Fred Lincoln:

I became close to her for a few months, but ‘Fleshpot’ was one of her last films and I never saw her again after that.


After Janet stopped making films, her acting career seemed to stall as well. She continued to live in New York for a number of years, and both Harry Reems and Jamie Gillis remember seeing her in restaurants or walking the streets near her apartment on East 11th Street. Neither approached her to re-connect. Later in their lives both expressed regret at not having done so.

At some point Janet moved back to where she grew up in La Jolla, CA.

It was here that the Rialto Report finally managed to speak with her in 2009.

When we contacted her, Janet expressed surprise that anyone would ever had heard of her, let alone remember her. She was guarded and at first said that she had only made “one or two films,” though she was intrigued to hear what had happened to her former acting friends.

She said that she had recently been having health issues, and would consider speaking in more detail once she felt stronger. She thanked us for our interest.

Shortly afterwards we learned that Janet passed away in La Jolla on June 17th, 2010. She was 63.

Having spoken to so many people to get a sense of who Laura Cannon really was, now she seemed to be even more of a mystery than she was at the beginning of our journey.

And somehow, that feels just right.

Laura Cannon






  1. Alan C. · January 8, 2017 Reply

    WELCOME BACK!!!!!!

    And please don’t go away again.

    As usual amazing investigative piece. Lovely, moving, human piece.

  2. PC · January 8, 2017 Reply

    Laura Cannon is one of the great enigmas of the NY -era XXX film biz. I have looked high and low for information about her. This is truly an amazing new year’s present. Maybe 2017 is already better than last year.

    Long live Rialto Report.

  3. Sam · January 8, 2017 Reply

    Thanks. Sundays are good again.

  4. Steven Otero · January 8, 2017 Reply

    The Rialto Report starts the New Year off with a bang !

  5. Jose Verschaffel · January 8, 2017 Reply

    Verry interesting, I wish i was in NY then!

  6. Jim Stevens · January 8, 2017 Reply

    Aw nuts, no podcast. But another riveting piece of detective work.

    Welcome back…hoping and also quite sure you’ll provide incisive, moving and fascinating distraction from the insanity that begins later this month.

  7. Tony F · January 8, 2017 Reply

    Wow. A really powerful return. Up to your unusually high standards. I couldn’t be more delighted to have you back.

    This story was such an intriguing one. Unfortunately not each story can have a tidy end. Thank you for all the light

    you shine on these seldom seen/lesser known performers. I can hardly wait until next Sunday!

  8. Mike "Jack" Kearney · January 8, 2017 Reply

    This article is EVERYTHING! Thank you so much! Wow! Yeah, I’ve always been curious about Laura Cannon/Diana Lewis, and googled around, etc. over the years, hoping to find something—anything. This article is perfect. Thank you.

  9. John · January 8, 2017 Reply

    So it all ended with the Ghastly One, Andy Milligan. You couldn’t write it better than that.

  10. Sutton Place · January 8, 2017 Reply

    I have to admit I have never heard of her before? But the story was very interesting, I always like these kind of pieces about an actress that is there for a brief moment then poof! gone never to be heard from again, what happened, why did they leave? kind of a flash in the pan type of situation.

    I hope Rialto will do more of these type of stories in the future, it is kind of easy to find the big stars of the 70’s, many make their money on selling pictures now on ebay, but it’s the unsung ones like this that grab you into their story. There was a very attractive actress who only did three porn films around 1986-87. Her name was Andrea Sutton, she was a lean athletic light skin black girl who did all her films in New York and then just disappeared, does anyone know what happened to her or why she left after only three films? I would love to see a piece like this on Andrea some day.

  11. Adrian · January 9, 2017 Reply

    Terrific report to begin 2017, welcome back!!!

  12. AlanG · January 9, 2017 Reply

    Another fascinating story and there was even a picture of an old girlfriend of mine from the La Jolla HS yearbook yearbook clip near the top of the post. Though I knew a lot of girls from that year’s senior class, Janet Channin was not one of them.

  13. J. Walter Puppybreath · January 11, 2017 Reply

    Great start to the New Year! Mind blown, as always.

  14. Staalwaart · January 25, 2017 Reply

    Stunned. Hope to read more from you.

  15. jesse james · January 23, 2021 Reply

    Fleshpot was TCM about a month ago, and I have not stopped thinking about Laura Cannon or most of the cast since I watched it. Amazing old school flick.

  16. Frank Wheeler · March 20, 2021 Reply

    “Fleshpot on 42nd Street” is something of a staple on cable TCM… saw it again there last night, and probably middle of last year. Came here ’cause I knew Rialto Report would know something about either the flick or the actress. It knows both! Good job.

  17. Mark Thorpe · March 24, 2021 Reply

    Wow, so it seems TCM of ALL PLACES is responsible for many of us becoming hooked on this film and Janet/Laura Cannon. I just couldn’t stop looking at her throughout this film. There is something about her acting that seems so completely natural and effortless; I kept thinking she would have done very well in mainstream movies. Even if she had done some 70’s sitcom, she would probably have elevated the material far more than many other actresses.

    I also couldn’t get over how completely she had me rooting for her the more the movie went along. At first, I thought, with her not wanting to get a “regular” job, her character was pretty unlikeable. Then a curious thing happened: even when she was stealing from people, I couldn’t NOT like her. I also found myself really getting into this film in a way I’ve only gotten involved with mainstream movies. Every actor surprised me with how well they played their parts, but Janet was especially intriguing. I watched this film for the 2nd time last weekend and recorded it as well. I can’t get Janet/Laura Cannon out of my mind. I think I’m in love with her.

    “Fleshpot on 42nd Street” reminded me of another porn movie with a surprisingly and an oddly profound moral, “Casey.” Both featured storylines and actors who exceeded what you’d expect to find in a porn film. I wish Janet had gone on to do more in the mainstream. I also had the feeling her performance in “Fleshpot” may have been very close to her real-life personality and it seems I may not have been far off. She seems like the kind of person who is brittle but kind, loving but aloof, guard constantly up but at heart, a very nice, down-to-earth person. Guys probably wanted to “rescue” her, but she probably didn’t really need rescuing. I appreciate that I found this article. You did an incredible job on making Jannet Channing a “real” person and not just some anonymous image on the screen.

  18. Mario Verde · June 26, 2022 Reply

    I liked your detailed piece on Laura Cannon. It is such a shame that The Rialto Report didn’t get the opportunity to do an audio interview with her before she past on. I have put together a pictorial image collection of deceased porn-stars from the past to the most recent. I have nearly 260 images. Laura Cannon is one of my favorites, next to Tina Russell, because I took the time to restore her image from the playboy shoot that you have posted here. She is now digitally preserved with a canvas like texture in HD resolution. If you have room for another photo of her, let me know.

  19. Al · October 3, 2022 Reply

    I didn’t even know she was in a movie that starred young Grace Jones


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