To celebrate the expanded availability of the autobiography of John Amero via online retailers, we’re presenting an exclusive, unpublished series of pictures from John’s personal archive.
Titled American Exxxtasy: My 30-Year Search for a Happy Ending, John’s book tells the candid story of a pioneering filmmaker whose career spanned many decades and film genres.
He started out with close friend Michael Findlay – a fellow movie lover he met in the editing department of ABC television – and together they directed the notorious ‘roughie’ Body of a Female in 1965. John then formed a film partnership with his brother Lem that produced groundbreaking 1960s exploitation films such as Diary of a Swinger and The Corporate Queen, and 1970s hardcore classics like Blonde Ambition and Every Inch a Lady.
During this time, John also made a notable series of gay sex films under the name Francis Ellie, and worked regularly with adult film stalwarts Chuck Vincent and Larry Revene throughout the 1980s. He continued to make his own films into the 1990s, including producing a mainstream television special starring Olympia Dukakis.
‘American Exxxtasy: My 30-Year Search for a Happy Ending’ is now available from Barnes and Noble and Amazon.
You can still buy a copy directly from the publisher, FAB Press, which is selling personally autographed copies.
Hurry – this first printing is almost sold out!
John Amero: Early Years
Budding filmmakers: Lem Amero (left, age 3) and John Amero (age 2)
Lem (left) and John with their mother
John’s short-lived modeling career – from a local Gloucester, MA publication
John’s childhood bedroom wall in Gloucester
John and Lem’s high school graduation photos
John hams it up for his high school yearbook
John Amero: New York-Bound (late 1950s)
John reconnects with brother Lem in New York City
John gets a job with ABC
John moonlighting up north as a State theater usher
‘Body of a Female’ (1964)
Michael Findlay strangles Lem at Coney Island
Busted! Left to right: John, Lem, Roberta Findlay, Michael Findlay
Word gets out in Gloucester
‘Diary of a Swinger’ (1967)
John and Rita Bennett (center)
‘Circle of Lust’ (unreleased)
John and Lem stab Michael Findlay in the back!
‘The Corporate Queen’ (1969)
John (back) with Ute Erikson (left)
Al Goldstein’s Screw magazine grades Corporate Queen on the notorious ‘Peter Meter’
John and Lem check their homemade paper mache set
‘Pepper Secret Agent 00x’ (aka ‘Checkmate’) (1973)
Lem (right) does last minute script review
Lem films the action
Jong and Lem (standing) with the cast
Lem sits with the slate while John stands back directly behind him
‘Every Inch a Lady’ (1975)
Lem (right) with Darby Lloyd Rains and Harry Reems
‘Blonde Ambition’ (1981)
Dory Devon (left) and Suzy Mandel (right) with choreographer, Mary Ann Niles
Choreographer Mary Ann Niles
John and Kurt Mann (in blonde wig)
Lem hard at work in the editing suite
Francis Ellie Films – The Gay Movies of John Amero
Christopher Street Blues (1977)
John’s first fan letter!
Lem Amero’s Passing
The first page of John’s eulogy of Lem
I’ve bought the book – and heartily recommend it.
Congratulations on having almost sold out of the first printing. Will there be a second printing when the time comes?
Thank you Jeff. We’ll certainly print more if needed!
The book is a moving, informative, well-written and entertaining trip through the history of adult film.
I bought several copies for film-obsessed friends for Christmas, and wanted to thank The Rialto Report for writing it with John.
How about a second volume on Chuck Vincent?
Thank you so much Keith!
I also bought the book, and give it my strongest recommendation. Insightful, moving, many funny stories. Congratulation to John Amero for the first printing almost sold out!
Thank you Frank!
This was interesting. Thanks for posting. It might be interesting to read a collection of Al Goldstein’s
movie reviews. Rialto Report is great.
Such great stuff. I was born too late, a couple decades too late. The best I could do was a couple trips to The Dive for Gore Gazette showings and a few years later get the very tail end of the glamour of Show World. Thanks again Rialto Report for making me wish every day was Sunday.
Thank you George!
I totally adore this book! I pre-ordered it from Fab Press and devoured it in 2 days. Well written, informative, interesting and extremely moving! So glad that it is now widely available for other fans to enjoy! Thanks to Mr. John Amero and The Rialto Report for sharing this exceptional story.
Have to admit I feel the same. It was a marvelous read – both personal and a historic and informative read.
Having these photos is an amazing companion and to the book.
Thank you to both Johns!
,Pepper Secret Agent 00x’
“Lem sits with the slate while John stands back directly behind him” picture–
I see Roberta Findlay 4th from left, guy 2nd from right in nice suit looks familar.
Did John,Lem and Roberta swap shirts? Or just shop together to get deals?
I found this book to be a fantastic bit of literature. Knowing John and Lem, I delighted in both the personal history provided as well as coming to understand the underpinnings of the exploitation film industry. A very worthwhile read that you will not want to put down. Excellent!
So happy for all involved and glad to have been a small part of it……..Loved the book and wish you a Happy Second Printing!
Thank you so much LaRue – much more than a small part!
Loved the book! It’s so well written and a very enjoyable read. I hope to hear that there will be a second printing!
This book is fantastic. Learned so much about the NYC scene back in the day. Even learned some new family lore. As always, John is the clever and astonishing storyteller. A wild ride!
Mad #37 (January ’58) pictured.
For anyone who liked John’s book and wants to support it, please leave a review on Amazon! https://www.amazon.com/American-Exxxtasy-30-Year-Search-Ending/dp/1913051064/ref=sr_1_1?dchild=1&keywords=john+amero&qid=1607877075&sr=8-1
Bought it for myself for Christmas. Don’t know if I can wait a whole week. Thank you for what you do.