Ron Hudd, a prolific New York adult film actor in the early 1980s, passed away recently.
The Rialto Report lost a friend. He spoke with reserved amusement about the people with whom he worked, like Radley Metzger, Roberta Findlay and Larry Revene, but preferred to remain in the shadows.
To mark his passing, The Rialto Report spoke with Lisa Be about her unique relationship with Ron.
It started on the set of a pornographic film, A Scent of Heather (1980).
It was my first experience as a performer in an adult movie. The film was directed by Bill Milling, who often used the name Bill Eagle or Dexter Eagle, but this time had adopted the nom de porn, Philip Drexler Jr. Bill was calm and civilized, and in hindsight, I was lucky this was my first experience of a porn shoot. Any concern or uncertainty I had in advance about taking part in such a venture evaporated when I got to the set. It was the warmest, least threatening, and happiest experience I ever had on a film set. Later I would realize that this level of comfort would not always be the case.
I took a car service to the location, an old stone mansion in Connecticut, where I met the cast and crew. I played Aunt Phylis and my first scene involved me initiating Heather, played by Veronica Hart, into the ways of love. Or more bluntly, I fingered her. It was a ridiculous scene and I was embarrassed to do it, but I later learned from a friend who went to see a screening of the film that the script was a plagiarized version of an Italian art house film Til Marriage Do Us Part (1974) – and that same, embarrassing scene was in the original!
The day I shot my second scene for the film remains one of the most beautiful of my life. It was with Ron Hudd, who I had just met for the first time. He was striking, intense and serious, as well as introverted and taciturn. He had a deep voice that commanded attention, and a tattoo of Pegasus on his arm. I found him instantly attractive, but wondered if we would have any chemistry. After all, we looked like the mid-western kids that we were, Ron from Indiana, me from Michigan, so would it be like two cousins having sex?
My doubts disappeared the moment we came together for the camera. I had just emerged from make-up in my period costume. Ron looked at me and his eyes grew wide in schoolboy incredulity. I stared back at him in awe, returning the same gaze. The instant sexual attraction was mutual, real, and intense.
Our scene started on a grand staircase, and ended on a four-poster bed. Ron was to deliver the line: “You are the most beautiful girl in the world,” which he changed to “You are the most beautiful woman in the world.” He said it with immense vulnerability and shyness, looking at me with the same intimate and penetrating stare.
The director shouted, “Cut!” and asked Ron to revert to the original dialogue line.
Ron looked embarrassed, taken aback. He snapped out of the moment, clearly fearing that he had been too sincere and romantic in delivering his line. The concern he had for being too authentic and not macho enough was etched over his face.
I soon learned, that was Ron. He disliked his own best qualities, such as the gentleness that he tried to keep hidden behind a gruff exterior.
The cameras rolled again, and Ron repeated the line, this time barking it out incongruously, and losing any dramatic meaning. It was a strange way to start a sex scene.
No matter. The sex that followed was as beautiful and intense as any sex I have ever had.
Ron and Lisa, in ‘A Scent of Heather’ (1980)
The next time I saw Ron was on a farm in Pennsylvania. It doubled as a swinger’s club at weekends, and we shot a sex magazine spread there.
Afterwards, we traveled back to New York on the train, and had a chance to talk for the first time. It was a strange, formal, and detached conversation, as if we didn’t want fellow passengers to realize that we’d just had sex. Ron told me he was an artist and lived in a studio on West Broadway. I told him I was a painter too, and that I did some writing. We swapped numbers.
A couple of months later I was offered a photo shoot with Puritan magazine. I called Ron and asked him if he was interested in doing it with me, and he eagerly accepted.
We traveled to the shoot in a van with the photographer, Ed Seeman and a make-up artist. During the journey, Ron took out a postcard-sized picture of one of his artworks. I was very impressed. It was an industrial landscape scene in the style of Thomas Hart Benton and the Regionalist art movement which depicted everyday people in everyday scenes of life. Ed took a look and dismissed it. “Predictable, unsurprising, nothing stands out” he said, waving it away.
I sensed Ron’s immediate and crushing disappointment. He was visibly upset and uncomfortable, making excuses for the smallness of the picture. Ron retorted that art that shocks was gimmicky. I was surprised: surely an artist like Ron had to have a thicker skin than this to cope with the inevitable reactions to his work? And then I saw the same embarrassment I’d noticed on the film set. He was ashamed that he had revealed his sensitivity, just like he had been when corrected by Bill Milling.
I rubbed his leg affectionately hoping to distract him, but he felt wounded. The preparation for the day’s shoot was difficult after that. Ron was frustrated with how long the make-up girl was taking to get me ready, and it was hours before we were able to start.
But once the photo shoot started, it was explosive. Ron’s pent-up frustration at having had to wait was unleashed and our connection was instant. The sex was just as incredible and passionate as it had been before. Even seasoned crew members, like Richard Jaccoma, admitted to being aroused.
On our way back to New York, I showed Ron some pictures of my artwork. He said he was impressed, and he mellowed. He showed a genuine interest in my work, and was engaged in our conversation.
He opened up, and for the first time talked about his personal feelings and aspirations. He said his art career meant everything to him. Certainly more than relationships. That was the reason he made adult films. The movies provided enough money to support his art endeavors, and meant he could have sex with a variety of women without the need for any commitment. He knew women expected more from him, but that was just not going to be possible. He told me that he’d called up fellow adult film performer, Samantha Fox, and asked to go out with her. After they had sex, he moved on, not returning her phone calls or contacting her again. He knew her feelings had been hurt, but he never called her back.
Despite this, I was strongly drawn to Ron. He was intelligent, brooding, and intense, and our sexual connection was without parallel.
I was struck by the contrast with another close friend and lover of mine, Ron Jeremy. Ron Jeremy was sweet, caring, kind, and funny. He was considerate and would never let anyone down. I would sometimes share his bed when I wanted companionship without any fears that he would take advantage of me. It’s strange the way life turns out.
Lisa Be, in the studio above Show World
In between film work, I worked at Show World – until Ron Martin, the manager, fired me.
I called around and spoke to other live sex show theaters. They told me to come down with a partner, and they’d consider me for a job. I called Ron Hudd, and he invited me over to his loft. He lived there with a few other artists. He showed me hundreds of his canvasses. Apart from the quality of his work, I was struck that none of them featured people. My own work was almost exclusively centered around human subjects.
I told Ron I was concerned about making money. He was thoughtful and considerate, and we discussed it for a while. In the end, he declined, saying, “I just want to be an artist: I don’t want to be known for sex.”
I asked him how he thought he could stay anonymous by doing something so public, so visible, as sex films?
He answered with a simple conviction: “If anyone ever asks me about it, I will tell them they are mistaken. They are getting me mixed up with someone else.”
In July 1981, we made our next film together, Cosmopolitan Girls for Dave Darby. It wasn’t an enjoyable or easy shoot, and much of that was due to Darby himself. My scene with Ron was in a dentist’s office – a real one hired for the production. Darby was playing around with the laughing gas, sucking it up himself and getting high – which made me nervous. Ron was made uncomfortable by the situation too and found it difficult to maintain an erection. It was a far cry from the professionalism of Scent of Heather.
In September 1981, Ron and I made another film, Young and Innocent (aka Wild Innocents). It was shot at a kid’s summer camp, unbeknownst to the owners of the property.
We spent time together chatting and talking about art, and I sketched him by the pool. I was struck by the way he was drawn into himself all the time, self-centered, diffident and meditative. When he opened up, he described a failed relationship that clearly weighed heavily. She was a senior executive at Grey Advertising, and Ron had told her how he felt about her. She left him shortly after that, and Ron was convinced that she’d lost respect for him because he’d revealed his vulnerability to her. It was the same old story: Ron was terrified of opening up and revealing himself to anyone in an intimate way.
In ‘Young and Innocent’ we were cast as camp counselors, and our scene is one of the most beautiful scenes I have ever seen. Ron may have been a chauvinist but he was attuned to pleasing me sexually. The scene remains etched in my memory and heart.
After that, Ron started calling me frequently asking to go out with me. I was surprised. He’d already confessed to me that he wasn’t interested in relationships. That he would discard women after he had sex with them. That he was only interested in his art. And I accepted that. So why was he so keen to see me outside of work?
I resisted the temptation to get together with him, but it wasn’t always easy.
Once I ran into Ron and Sean Elliot at Bernard’s. I invited them both back to my place on Sullivan St for the night. We had sex, but it was a strange, unsuccessful affair. Ron and Sean were nervous and we seemed out of sync with each other.
Next day, I asked Ron why he thought it hadn’t worked. In his booming, deep voice, he said: “Sometimes there’s just too much of a danger that the two guys are going to go for each other.”
In December 1981, Ron called again. He said he wanted to see me. He wanted to take me to a stag party where we’d have chance to dance, have fun, and be together.
I was excited. I had fantasized about this. I imagined a real date. We’d get to know each other more. Perhaps a conversation about our pasts, presents, and futures. I could learn more about his family and friends. Hear about his art work. This was what I’d been waiting for.
I accepted his invitation. I took a taxi to a nightclub on West 36th St, and entered the building with high hopes.
I was disappointed.
There was no conversation, no acknowledgement that I was there. A short while after I arrived, he started making moves on me. His intentions were clear: he was repeating the same behavior that he’d used on Samantha Fox. I’d thought that I was more interesting than that. I was hurt and sad.
I told Ron that I was leaving, and he was surprised. He said: “I never knew that you’re so turned off by me.”
I wanted to tell him everything: that he was my favorite partner, that I longed to get to know him better, that I wanted something more with him, but I didn’t.
I left. I was proud of myself for not giving in and surrendering to him, but I was upset that we hadn’t talked. We communicated so perfectly sexually, but found it difficult to do with words.
It was only fitting that as my first adult film role had been with Ron, my last was with him too.
Teach Me was a cheap, shot-on-video effort. It had been only a short few years, but the adult film industry had changed, and so had Ron. Now, Ron had to engage in rougher sex in order to stay aroused, and we were embarrassed to be there. It was clear that we both felt rejected and hurt by each other. We were young, and hid our unresolved feelings from each other, when we should have tried to talk and express ourselves instead.
A few years ago, I went back and watched ‘Scent of Heather’ again on DVD. I had just read a New York Times article denouncing porn, and I wanted to test my own memories and values. I hadn’t seen any of my films since they came out in the 1980s, and I wondered if re-watching my first film would cause me to re-appraise that part of my life through a modern-day lens. Was I guilty of misremembering it? Or romanticizing the era and the sex industry, and my own involvement in it?
I watched my scene with Ron, and I was surprised to be overcome with tears of emotion.
Firstly, because I was confronted by myself in the flower of youth. A young, attractive girl with a voluptuous body that I hardly recognized from the mid-sixty year old I am today. I never appreciated how pretty I was at the time, but then again, who does?
Then there was the sexual energy and power I once possessed, and now mourned never to return. I cried too for the critical negative judgement against sex performers that existed then, and still exists today. We were, and are, at odds with the world. I thought of Catharine MacKinnon and her diatribe, ‘Only Words’ (1993), in which she argued that pornography is an act of intimidation, subordination, terrorism, and discrimination, and should be legally treated as such. What would she make of this scene, in all its gentle intimacy and beauty?
And then there was Ron. I was struck by Ron, all over again.
Over the decades since I had last seen him, I often thought about him. About how I wished we’d had the chance to say what we should have said when he invited me to go dancing with him. So many years had passed, but the feelings remained bottled up in my sub-conscious. I decided to write an account of our relationship.
When I finished the piece, I looked Ron up online. He was easy to find. He was now a successful painter whose work appeared in exhibitions across the country, and sold through major auction houses. (It was however sad to see that he had abandoned his earlier wistful style in favor of modern, colorful abstract images.)
I got hold of a phone number for him, and a couple of years ago, I called him.
When Ron answered the phone, I re-introduced myself. He sounded panicked and alarmed.
I told him I was writing a piece about our relationship against the backdrop of the adult film industry in the early 1980s. I offered to send it to him. He expressed an interest in reading it, and so I said I’d email it to him.
It was a short call, that was understandable given his surprise at hearing from me after such a long time.
A few weeks later, I followed up with another call to see if he had had chance to read the article. What happened next shouldn’t have surprised me given what he had once told me, but it did.
He denied knowledge that we had known each other. Refused the idea that he’d ever been active in the adult film business: “I painted some nudes back in the day, but that’s all. You must be mistaken. You must be getting me mixed up with someone else.”
He still had difficulties expressing himself, and closed the conversation by saying, “I am not interested in continuing this conversation.”
I was saddened by Ron’s reaction. I tried to console myself with the thought that at least I had tried to reach out and seek closure.
A while later I was contacted by someone in touch with Ron. This person told me that Ron was going through a difficult time in his personal relationships, but that I could expect to hear from Ron as soon as he felt he had worked them out. I wondered if Ron’s reticence to engage with me was perhaps a result of being in a relationship where his adult film past was an issue.
I waited to hear from Ron, but heard nothing.
I decided to take one final step. I resolved to send him a birthday card, to remind him that if he ever wanted to re-connect, I’d be happy to speak with him.
I looked online to find his birth date. Instead, I came across his obituary. Ron had passed away only weeks before.
I was devastated.
I was a sex worker. A prostitute, a lap dancer, and a porn star. Men like Ron Hudd played an important, critical, part of my life. They kept me alive because of the connection I had with them. Other people were bodies, but not Ron. He didn’t act a role when we were together. He was real. He was compatible with me. I loved him in a strange way.
I hadn’t been in touch with Ron for many years, but I realized that I had harbored hopes that one day, we’d be able to communicate. I fantasized one day we’d meet again. Go to a museum, a coffee shop, a walk in the park. We’d talk. I’d explain that night. The sadness, the disappointment. I’d explain that I never rejected him. On the contrary, I just wanted more. Finding that Ron had died meant that this would never happen.
I am at the age where I lose friends. I know that. But Ron was part of my formation. He was life blood to me. I never pictured myself in this world without the possibility to speak with him again. I haven’t been able to accept that yet.
When I learned of Ron’s passing, I let myself mourn a person I loved, but perhaps hardly knew.
Ron Hudd, artist, in later years
Very moving piece.
I think these kinds of stories are why some of us have a conflicted view of pornography. It must make it more difficult for the performers to find a life partner. There are souls inside those images we stream on the internet. They are human beings. Lisa Be seems like a sweet soul and I wish her the best.
What can I say, Ron was a person I always secretly hoped you would feature in a podcast. So sad to hear that he is gone, but a simply exceptional tribute. Heartbreaking, but essential.
Another amazing article. Every week, I refrain from adding yet another complement to the long list of complements, but it’s unavoidable this time. This was a tremendously affecting story. I thank you.
And thanks to Lisa too. My condolences and thoughts are with you. Thanks for sharing.
If Lisa Be does read this, I am so sorry with regard to what you experienced, not getting the closure you needed, as well as how you learned about his passing. It sounds like Mr. Hudd had issues in his life and be that as it may, hope he finds eternal peace. This was a very moving article that certainly reinforces the fact as to how we are all on borrowed time as far as life goes.
Great job as always by the Rialto Report.
Awesome Article Keep Up Good Work
Thanks to Lisa Be for writing such a lovely memorial to Ron. RIP
I sought out “A Scent of a Heather” after reading this article, but only watched the scene Lisa described. It does appear that Lisa enjoyed the scene. She seemed so relaxed and everything was very gentle and erotic. I especially liked it when she got on top of Ron and we got a good look at her cute buttocks.
If more porn scenes were shot this way, less of them would give me the creeps. I am not a fan of violent nasty scenes.
Whoever you are, that was just right. Thank you very much for being a consumer who enjoys cute buttocks (that’s just perfectly alright–damn those overly Puritanical feminists!) but also appreciates what is “gentle and erotic.” I’m glad you’re “not a fan of violent nasty scenes.” We need more GOOD customers like you! You don’t know how much I appreciate guys who admit that they like sexual vulgarity (so do I) but never want to see anyone get hurt. Again, thanks so much
You’re welcome and thank you.
Men and women were place here to help, enjoy, and live together. We should never lose sight of that. I will always admit to enjoying a woman’s body, but with respect and appreciation to those who shared their beauty with me. Meanness and evil have no place in any of this for any of us.
You’re a treasure of thoughts and emotions. Cheers!
Lisa, wow. What an amazing piece with so many lovely insights. Having seen Cosmopolitan Girls and the others it’s a real treat to read about your experience shooting those scenes. I thought the dentist office scene was hot but that’s perhaps all editing. And yes, you were beautiful and also totally unique in your vibe. Adult starlets sadly became Stepfordized and hairless. Btw – Scoundrels scene with R Jeremy was super hot.
It is clear that many adult stars from that golden era were complex, multi-talented and often far more intellectual than people would assume. You, Sharon Cane and so many other ladies from that time seemed like cerebral or aesthetically gifted power houses. Sounds like with Ron H you had sexual chemistry and artistic vision sharing but maybe not the emotionally courageous connection you sought. It was bold of you to make the effort to connect before he died. Hopefully in his private thoughts he appreciated it for a few moments.
Lisa , thank you for sharing your story with us. It was very touching. I hope you’re still doing your art. Have you written other things are available to the public. Thank you sincerely. Philip
Thank you, Philip, and all of the acknowledgments I’ve received have helped with this wrenching event–thanks. I am still primarily a painter and sculptor (always have been since childhood) and have a great deal of unpublished writing no one will publish because it’s too radical, often sexually explicit and because I espouse unpopular views. The Rialto Report has rules about communication between us. If it would be alright for me to have your email I would be delighted to send you defenses of pornography I’ve written and certain other things. Hopefully the moderator will mediate appropriately and we can be in touch. Thank you so much for your interest, Lisa
Hi Lisa, it’s Greg Lions. We worked together at ShowWorld back in the early 80s. You gave me a painting. I’m writing my memoirs now too. I noticed you said you wrote tons of things; I would recommend you self-publish via draft2digital or any of a variety of ebook platforms online. I hope you’re well. Nice seeing your name again. I was on the chapter of my book about the film Babe. I mentioned that I saw Ron Hudd on set and that he was disappointed because he only had a masturbation scene in the film! Yeah life. Time just sweeps along.
The Wild and Innocent or Young Innocents scene between Lisa and Ron is very steamy. The closest thing to make up sex ever caught on film.
Such a naughty little gal.
Thank you, thank you, thank you. –Lisa
Thank you, Lisa Be!
Once again a human face on something termed an “industry” but actually based in love. Not product.
This is what they make literature from. Thanks, and sympathy, to Lisa and to the Rialto Report.
Thank you Lisa Be.
Roy comes across as a tortured individual but this is a beautifully written, bittersweet tribute from an obviously kind-hearted lady.
I’m sorry at your loss, Lisa.
Thank you for the interesting article.
Lisa, this is deeply affecting piece and I am sorry for your loss.
I hope that you will find closure knowing that you enjoyed a special relationship with Ron.
It is a remarkable addition to this amazing Rialto site.
My breath was taken away by this. A messy, complex, strangely uplifting yet sad story. Powerful, indeed.
Dear KLP– for two months I thought about your post. I was struck by your describing the story as in “uplifting” (and by the way, all of those adjectives fit!). How uplifting? –I thought. My answer, and I wonder what you think, might be that although pornographic actors aren’t supposed to love each other, it happens. That IS what’s uplifting to me, for although this was indeed, messy, complex and sad, I’m as far from regretting the passion we shared a few times as anyone can be! There’s the smile. Love, Lisa
Genuinely affecting. I come here for the salacious…. I stay for the emotion. Powerful.
Beautifully written. Poignant.
My favorite scene of Ron’s, is with Bambi Woods, when Ron was playing the Sheriff. That lucky guy, Bambi Woods. A very touching tribute. Thanks Rialto!
Well Lisa, I would like to share something with you..
You counted! To me!
This is Sean Elliot and I want you to know that I’ve often thought about you and wondered how you’re life has evolved, grown and changed since those “ glory days” I clearly remember our triste and the uncomfortable vibe. But you may recall, after Ron had left, I stayed 💖. Not for sex! For you! I’m reminded when we worked together on “ Scoundrels” and Cecil Howard wanted all this acrobatic sex! We were like, can’t we just fuck … And I remember you excited me so much that I came quickly as I thought I heard the director say cum now. Oops🤷🏼♂️ And it turned out just fine as we continued a while longer, maybe a half hour and they backward spliced the footage. And after they were done , you and I stayed in the bed, in that loft, making love That’s how I felt. Making love.
Very few actors did to me emotionally on set what you did Ms. Lisa Be!
I felt blessed to work with you on two films, to know you as a person I cared about off set. I’m not quite sure why we didn’t hang out more as friends because when we we together I believe we really enjoyed spending time together. Anyway, I’m so glad to “ hear” from you. That you are well! You, along with Lisa DeLeeuew were actors yes, but to me, you both left an emotional imprint in a business where emotions often are mistaken for just doing your job!
Actually you can reach me if you would ever like to. I would love to go down memory lane for a moment. I’m much more interested in how you are today
I would love to talk to you anytime, Steve–what a great comment! What a lovely surprise! I will send you my contact details. I would love to talk. Love (honestly!), Lisa
Very sad and beautiful. I’ve always wondered how porn performers separated their emotions from their partners when having sex in front of the camera, since sex is ultimately about intimacy. Clearly, some people can’t help but make a deeper connection, which has to take an emotional toll. I hope Ms. B shares more about her experiences in that unique time and place, as she’s a captivating writer.
Lisa Be should like to speak to all of you who commented. As I cry, then feel better, cry, then feel better I have thoughts that nevertheless bring a smile to my face I should like to share with you.
When JFK died, Jackie got almost a million letters of condolence (without the public knowing almost all those letters except for the ones from prominent people were just shredded without her ever seeing them). She was probably surprised at getting that many letters, but others not surprised–after all, a journalist said to me, JFK was so loved that people refused to let him die; all those airport naming’s and memorials began to be necrophilia. Getting obsessed with people who are dead is indeed a danger, and I’ve thought about that.
But mostly about the fact that although Jackie got 900,000 letters and they probably they weren’t helpful to her (not with a loss like that), just 21 comments were so helpful to me. I want all of you to know that as I read the things you were saying I wept with gratitude–I’m not lying.
You see, very few people understand the nature of this relationship, and that brings me to the next thing I can’t help laughing about. We now have a concept of a porn veteran, for there are many thousand people now who have had the courage to be filmed having sex with other people. Guess what? Consistently with that, we now need a new category: PORN WIDOW. Hi, everybody.
Although I wasn’t one of Jamie’s fans, when Serena was “devastated by her loss,” as I heard, I felt bad for her, but admittedly, not as much as I do now. And although I never really knew Vanessa del Rio or Paul Thomas (they dwelled in different X-rated orbits mostly), I don’t think either of them would mind my saying that when Paul predeceases Vanessa (likely since men usually die first), she will cry for two weeks. Prepare yourself honey. One day it will probably happen.
My heart is full of love for all of you for listening and helping me. –Lisa Be
Hey Lisa it’s Lisa Cintrice I had to pop in to say hello
I am on Twitter if you ever want to reach out
I only have good memories of you
Very well written and touching article
Lisa Cintrice– wonderful to hear from you! I will pass my contact details to you. Won’t you please get in touch? I’d love to talk!
Definitely message me on Twitter I will send you my contact info
I would love to catch up with you
Hard to believe I am still standing
Many thanks to you, Lisa Be, for this touching and thoughtful reminiscence of your time spent and memories of Ron Hudd. While I was unfamiliar with both you and Ron at the start of the article, now I am eager to see the movies you were both in.
Yes, I think “porn widow” is an apt title for some of the ladies in porn when the co-star or real-life love they cherished passes. I hope that inasmuch as you might dub yourself with that title you know that I believe Ron would have reached out, had he not passed. I truly believe it.
Thank you too. Every condolence helps. Give yourself a hug. Love, Lisa
Before signing off, I wanted to thank you for telling me you thought Ron Hudd would have reached out because as my testimonial shows, he was consistently inconsistent! I was never sure if he cared or not, and when he was sexually attentive and passionate and affectionate–I could feel it!–he seemed always to withdraw what he’d given the next time he saw me probably out of fear of involvement. That makes sense.
However, Wakan Tanka, the Great Spirit so-called by the Yankton Indians of the Plains (near where Ron Hudd was born!), had a plan for me. I would have been more disappointed by seeing my onscreen lover than had I not. Recent photos of him with his “artwork” (computer-generated “sell-me” tableaus with scarcely a trace of feeling, in my opinion) revealed that he had become a pig–a completely opaque, unemotional man. I detected not a trace of beauty anymore outside or inside.
Thy knoweth all, Great Spirit.
This was the most moving story I have read on here. I have listened to a number of these reports but never felt like posting before now.
I saw “A Scent of Heather ” years ago and your scene with Ron has stayed in my memory, unlike anything else in that film. It was a very erotic scene, even without reading your account of it I could tell there was nothing fake going on and it was a real sexual attraction. I had not seen you in a film before, and looked up more of your films. I liked the scene on the boat in “Wanda Whips Wall St.”, another great “cute buttocks ” scene!
I hope that you still do your artwork. Art can be part of a healing process and useful in helping us deal with the past.
Thank you for so honestly sharing your feelings. I was moved by it, and wish you the best.
Thank you, CFB, and you are quite right about the fact that that scene with me and Ron in “Heather” was and is one of the most authentic you’ll ever see in a porn movie– in fact, the reason I spread my cheeks, giving the audience a nice masturbation shot, is that I wanted to make sure my porno audience didn’t feel left out! I had to express the fact that I knew they were there too, and be mindful of the fact that few men watching that were as beautiful as Ron and could get a woman in bed as easily–I didn’t want them to be made to feel inadequate! The reason that the scene changes to being a little dominant at the end, with my licking up Ron’s ejaculation and his saying: “Suck it!” was that he too realized that we couldn’t put something so sweet in a porn movie without alienating that portion of the audience so very unlikely ever to get a real encounter with a woman a fraction as beautiful as that; those men need a little bit of selfishness, manipulation and psychological force in fantasy, Catherine Mackinnon, not because they hate women (no!) but because they are endlessly rejected–it’s perverted love! This I know from having worked at the old Melody Burlesk where I sat naked on the laps of several thousand porn consumers over about five years–I know those guys intimately as customers; you dismiss them with little or no understanding of their experience (none, so far as I’m concerned).
I should like those of you watching our/my old movies to know my favorites and least so.
1. A Scent of Heather: Ron Hudd/me
2. Wild Innocents: Ron Hudd/me
3. Centerfold Fever: Ron Jeremy, Tiffany Clark/me
4. Wanda Whips Wall St: Ron Jeremy / me
5. Liquid Assets: Bobby Astyr, Samantha Foxx / me
6. Debbie Does Dallas II: the one I hate!
7. Cosmopolitan Girls: Ron Hudd/me–but that was no good
8. Teach Me: R. Bolla/me and Ron Hudd / me–but that was my last movie and bad…
May I give some clarifications about these other movies. When Ron & I made “Cosmo Girls” he was nervous and unlike himself. He yelled at me: “I want to see you suck on those big tits of yours!”–that wasn’t in the script, but he was getting macho and objectifying to get hard. What had been wrong is that he was in love with that advertising executive, felt guilty (I’m positive she know nothing about his X-rated life), and disconnected from me, but at the end of our scene, which he enjoyed so little that he had to jerk off, he squirted so much semen on me that I had to rub it all over myself like lotion so it wouldn’t drip–and then, rubbed the excess all over his arms as a way of expressing the fact that I hadn’t appreciated the way he acted that day. They didn’t cut it, and in no other movie did I ever see the woman put the guy’s come right back on him. Tee-hee! Now you know how that glop feels!
But on the set of “Wild,” we were right back in tune, cast as lovers; as fellow camp counselors, and our mutual joy is so, so evident. When we’re through with “69” and before I assume the missionary position (man on top), Ron looks at me with a personal grin and I avert my eyes because I was (still) afraid to see him off set. There was some personal love there–“no ’bout a-doubt it,” and that was when he told me and Lyzanne, the makeup artist, about the end of his affair–that’s when I knew why he’d seemed absent before and was with me again.
In “Centerfold Fever,” I was cast as a lesbian X-rated model who seduces Tiffany Clark. I’m bi, not gay, and I told Richard Milner (director, script writer) to have Ron Jeremy run in and get both of us so I could enjoy the scene–sex with a woman without a man there to me is starting something I can’t finish. What was terribly funny about that segment is that about four years later, when Richard and I had a love affair (we ended as friends and are still close) is that somebody said to him: “Lisa BE? –Isn’t she gay?” Richard: “No, she was just a better actress than we thought.”
With Ron Jeremy on the set of “Wanda,” I was in my prime, and I’m so grateful for that beautiful footage of us– I am an old woman now and seeing what I had looked like helps me to accept the natural deterioration which is part of human existence. But most of all, I should like everyone to know that that young, handsome drug-free Ronnie of 1981, with a flat tummy and a very good mind indeed, had been one of the most reliable, decent human beings in the X-rated world… his deterioration has been heartbreaking for me and others who knew him “when.”
My scene with Samantha/Bobby in “Liquid” is more slapstick humor than anything sexual but it was great fun. They were a real-life X-rated couple, I had a friendly (but not so personal) relationship with both of them–I felt affectionate, comfortable and heartily enjoyed the silliness of the whole thing (lest anyone consider me too serious).
But that same month, Dec.’81, on the set of “Debbie Does Dallas II,” director Dave Buckley’s assistant Perry was whipping Alan Adrian, and thanked me for my disapproving look, since I always hated S&M, with a lash. I was naked, defenseless, certain people who didn’t like me laughed (yeah, put that superior bitch down!), and Buckley told me to just get on with it and eat dick. I have a visible welt mark in the movie, look as if I’m going to cry (I did cry afterwards) and Bob Sumner told me he would make sure that bastard apologized to me properly, but I declined, for I would not have accepted. I knew I had a lawsuit; employees are supposed to be protected by their employers, but knew such a thing would be very well-publicized, would absorb my life, and that I might be threatened. I nevertheless want the man to know that if he died undiscovered in a small elevator after days of no food and water I’d be cheering. The truth: somebody offered to put them both in the hospital for me. I thought about it but declined, for I have always tried to be civilized.
“Teach Me,” my last movie, shows my best acting job in any of them, but not with Ron Hudd (we weren’t acting, for the most part!) but R. Bolla. a terrific actor. The theme is slightly evil in that I seduce my uncle, but was so, so well-done that I accept that (and I’m seducing him, not the reverse: good). But my last scene ever, also with Ron Hudd was the worst–because we shot it AFTER he’d invited me to go out dancing and I left because I refused to spend the night with him without any personal acknowledgement. Our lack of communication surfaced to me then, because he was apparently very hurt and upset indeed. “Too rough!” I can be heard saying to him as he pushed my head into his crotch. Also, in that movie, I tell him–an obscene phone caller– to go ahead and kill my dog. I have been an animal rescuer who illegally had 16 cats in her apartment at one time (all rescued from the street, taken to a vet and adopted by others). I couldn’t believe I did that and it was time for “Lisa Be” to exit–I was being too much influenced. If only Ron Jeremy realized that in time.
Sean Elliott has already described our beautiful, beautiful scene in “Scoundrels.” I was still working at the Melody then, Sean, and my customers had seen the movie. They loved us together in it!
…And so do I embrace all of you, so, so helpful to me with this terribly painful loss.
Thank you for your detailed response. I actually have a copy of Scoundrels on the blu ray edition and you were stunning in that film. Another one I had not seen before , and I enjoyed your sex scenes and the offbeat style of the whole film.
I will look up the good films on your list. I haven’t seen most of those. I am hoping more of the films will be re released like Scoundrels and Wanda have been, in better quality .
Ron Jeremy is just tragic. I saw a recent photo of him on social media and he is unrecognizable.
I am so glad the comments are helping you. Such a loss can take a long time to heal, if it ever does, but being able to write about it as you are is a healthy approach .
I really loved your work, Lisa Be. Memories of you continue to flourish in my mind from every scene you did. Even though you hated it, “Debbie Does Dallas II” was my favorite, only because that was the first porn movie I ever watched back in the 80’s. Wanda Whips Wall Street with Ron Jeremy was second. Hope what ever you’re doing nowadays you’re happy and healthy. ❤️
Hi, Smooth: I am glad you were able to enjoy “Debbie” even though I hated it and with “Wanda” I was perfectly comfortable and feeling plenty of joy, desire and satisfaction. So, that’s one up and one down! Thanks 2U & all my fans. Love, Lisa
Genuinely moving… two lives in a perfectly formed capsule.
The passing of time is bitter sweet: it provides wisdom and understanding, but also regrets, loss, and disappointment. Lisa’s honest here is disarming and enlightening, and it is a wonderful reflection. It is in many ways a perfect and rare obituary. It doesn’t sugar-coat, but reveals tenderness and emotion nonetheless. I have become accustomed to the quality of the Rialto Report. It has been a rare beacon of intelligence in this strange industry and era. This article is a wonderful example of that.
Thanks Lisa (and Rialto). I have read this and re-read this several times. A memorable meditation.
Very moving story. I hope this leads to a Lisa Be interview. So intelligent and passionate. Her replies had me captivated.
Great job Lisa and The Rialto
To all of you to whom I have infinite gratitude:
This will be the last Lisa Be post, and I have had an epiphany.
In the summer of 1981, when I met Ken of Ken & Seka just about a year and a half after she left him, I asked: “Do you still miss her, Ken?” He thought a minute and said: “I went through bitterness, I went through hurt, I went through anger, but at a certain point, you realize that losses are a part of life… and that the person you loved just isn’t there anymore.”
I loved Ron Hudd and found out he wasn’t there anymore in more ways than one.
I started looking at the pictures of him with the paintings in his galleries. The one shown here by Ashley West (to whom I am eternally grateful for this post) shows him I would guess at about 40, still looking handsome, but the excellent hand-painted work he’d done of fantasy industrial landscapes has already given way to what I consider commercial work suitable for a doctor’s office or a bank. He’s also just beginning to get out of shape.
But when I found a more recent picture of him at about 55, I might not even have recognized him. I spent summers at my grandparents’ in the Midwest. People there eat sausages and pancakes with syrup for breakfast, a cheeseburger, fries and a shake for lunch, more bad food for dinner and they drive everywhere. My youthful Adonis was 40 pounds overweight and looked like nothing so much as a typical Midwestern mechanic–you’d place him in a service station more than in a gallery. And the trash he had begun to produce, which apparently was selling well, was being purchased– as I predicted– by PNC bank. Not a trace of his beautiful body or beautiful face revealed itself in a persona unrecognizable to me for its insensitivity; he looked uncultured and more well-defended– really macho and apparently (I’m sorry, I must say what I was thinking) pretty unconcerned about most things in this world except making money. Businessman, that’s all, and peddling crap.
He had trashed his talent and his beauty. His triumph over his vulnerability was complete!
Alas, my darling had died a long time ago, not recently– aahhh, those beautiful paintings, that beautiful body, that skillful lover, that sensitive man who couldn’t deal with, as I submit to stereotypes, his feminine side.
Ken said: “The person you loved just isn’t there anymore.”
He hadn’t been for a long time.
And now I can accept it.
Thank you all for standing by me, and now I’m going to be okay.
Have you considered doing a full interview Lisa? Thanks for your insights and stories.
I’m glad that you made contact with a couple of friends from the old days in this thread.
Thank you, Mark; I’m not the one who decides. The Rialto Report might line me up at some point, but to be truthful, I’m still grieving, though not crying–I gave myself 11 days of that and stopped, intentionally, on Valentine’s Day. Better to have loved and lost than not to love at all, as they say. I’m not ready yet because my mind is still too absorbed with Ron’s death. We’ll see, and the support of everyone like you has been so helpful to me. –Lisa
That Bobby Astyr is funny looking little feller. He kind of looked like the mainstream actor, Michael J Pollard.
Ever since I discovered the Rialto Report I have kept my fingers crossed that Ron Hudd would be interviewed. I’m so sorry to read that he has passed away. He truly was one of the greats. So many of his performances stand out; two that come to mind immediately are his scenes with Kelly Nichols: the first in Roommates and the second in Bon Appétit. (My apologies to you Lisa but I haven’t seen your scenes with Ron.) It was this scene in Bon Appétit, where he portrayed an artist, that made me want to learn more about him. I was convinced that Chuck Vincent cast him in that particular role not just for his sexual prowess, but also because he was an artist. This attention to detail and casting is what made Chuck’s films standout. I was sure the paintings in the film were done by Ron. After I watched that film, I scoured every adult magazine on the stands for an interview with him.; I wanted to know if he was an artist as I suspected. I came up empty. Perhaps the mags felt Ron was not of the caliber of John Leslie or Jamie Gillis, who got a majority of the press. Or perhaps Ron himself declined to be interviewed. After all, Lisa quoted him as saying: “I just want to be an artist; I don’t want to be known for sex.” In any event, thank you Lisa for giving me a glimpse into the Ron you knew. Thank you Rialto Report for allowing Lisa to share her memories. And, last but not least, thanks to all of the stars who have come out of the shadows and agreed to be interviewed. This fan of Classic Erotica is so happy you have.
Thank you for the great addition! I must reach out to you!
Ron Hudd’s early artwork was fantastic and I applaud Chuck Vincent for letting Ron’s true self; his inner value be exposed along with his outstanding sexuality– you see, I knew that they went together! I saw the scene with Kelly also (liked her– nice, responsible lady and ended up marrying a really nice guy and having two children with him as of the last time I saw her in 1987)– and you should know something: he was so gorgeous and well-hung that for almost all of us, having sex with him was no job! I could see what she was feeling in that scene: “Thank God that I get the real thing sometimes!” Yet he was difficult personally. On numerous occasions, I saw him show sensitivity and consideration for me and other people, and yet at other times, he had the tendency to be rude. As his defense attorney, I should point out that since he was beautiful, a fantastic fuck and very, very talented, if he had been a gentleman, every woman he met would propose marriage in a week. No wonder he pushed us off sometimes. You are also quite right about the fact that he pushed off the public too, refusing to be interviewed or make personal appearances; the Rialto Report mentions that he refused to work in a Live Sex Show with me (and was very polite with me about saying “no”–he showed his kind, good side that night).
I wouldn’t be surprised if there were others who loved him, but the passion between the two of us had a great deal to do with the fact that I’m a painter and a sculptor too, only I consciously and deliberately chose never to try to make a living at it, and that’s actually how I became a pornographic actress! Later in life, I became a secretary and a caregiver for other old people, always going to The Art Students’ League, doing portraits and some “good taste,” serious flower paintings and I did sell those, but never, never would consider doing what Ron eventually did– become a commercial artist who produced trash (I won’t take that back). If you want to make a living as an artist, you must do commercial work. That tends to corrupt your sensibility and you will soon find you have no time for the real stuff. The next thing you know is that you’re not really an artist anymore. I saw it happen with other contemporaries besides Ron Hudd. Thank God I always refused to take a job at Hallmark Cards–when people walk in my studio, they can see I’m sincere.
The tragedy of Ron Hudd’s life is that his beautiful, early work is nowhere to be found–except that it must be in that porn movie! Wherever Chuck Vincent is, I can’t thank him enough. How ironic that his soul should have been lost to the culture of the “make-a-buck-or-U-haven’t-made-it” Midwest (where he unfortunately returned) but that his talent should have been honored in a porn movie– which the majority of people have contempt for. I have contempt for what galleries on Madison Avenue and in Soho show, and that phony world swallowed my onscreen lover. He should have stayed in New York and gotten a teaching job at the League. He could still be working there.
Meanwhile, I can’t watch Ron’s old movies now because they will make me cry all over again.
Thank you, Greg, I’ll definitely go looking when I’m ready and I can’t thank you enough for tipping me off!
Thank you for your wonderful response. There are no words to express how much I appreciate it. Finally, after decades of searching for information, I’m learning more about Ron.
When I commented on the interview with Randy Paul on another part of this website, I wrote: I am a bi guy who has spent as much time checking out the men as well as the women in adult flicks. My favorite males were Ron Hudd, Kevin James, David Morris, Steve Douglas, Marc Wallice and Randy Paul.
I didn’t list Ron first by accident. All of these guys were sexy and talented. All of them brought something unique to their scenes. But there was something special about Ron. I guess in mainstream Hollywood, it would be called the ‘IT’ factor. Truthfully, all of my favorite guys had ‘IT’. Ron just had something extra ~ at least in my eyes. I couldn’t put my finger on that ‘something extra’ until I read your story. I believe it’s his vulnerability that viewers got an occasional glimpse of that set him apart.
I mentioned Bon Appetit earlier. It was that scene in Bon Appetit ~ the first movie of his that I saw ~ that made me seek out his other films. Yes, I was struck first by the artwork, but when he took off those blue overalls and I saw those abs… and that dick, I forgot all about the art! This was the first of 3 times I wanted to change places with Kelly Nichols. (The other times were her scene with Ron in Roommates and her scene with Jerry Butler in In Love!) I was crushing…BIG TIME!
As I mentioned, for years I have wondered about Ron. I imagined him a tortured artist not unlike Auguste Rodin. It seems that I wasn’t wrong. Rodin also struggled with commitment. Fifty-three years into their relationship, Rodin married Rose Beuret. They married on 29 January 1917, and Beuret died two weeks later! He also had a tumultuous relationship with Camille Claudel.
Of course, I fantasized about Ron. He never gave off a vibe that he was attracted to men, but something you wrote in your story betrayed that he might have been ~ and the thought frightened him: Ron and Sean were nervous and we seemed out of sync with each other. Next day, I asked Ron why he thought it hadn’t worked. In his booming, deep voice, he said: “Sometimes there’s just too much of a danger that the two guys are going to go for each other.”
How sad to read this. How sad he couldn’t have relaxed and enjoyed the moment.
He could have learned something from the ancient Greeks who believed there were 8 different types of love:
• Eros (romantic, sexual passion)
• Philia (affection, deep friendship)
• Ludus (playful love)
• Agape (selfless love, love for everyone)
• Pragma (longstanding love)
• Philautia (love of the self)
• Storge (family love)
• Mania (obsessive love)
I would love to know Sean’s thoughts about that evening. He says he remembers the uncomfortable vibe. Was Ron more uncomfortable than he was? Was he tempted to make a play for Ron but sensed Ron would object?
I agree with what you said about art. I studied photography. I could have gone the route my teachers wanted ~ high school year books, mall portraits and weddings. I knew that by doing so any desire I had to pick up my camera would evaporate.
With love and appreciation,
How incredibly exciting to hear all this from you, Greg, and your having the courage to come out as a bi-guy! Thanks! Personal: my mother was very homophobic and I grew up a little girl very embarrassed to be attracted to both sexes, and lesbian scenes in porn movies were what got me over that shame (great!) although I’ve always preferred men (and only fall in love with guys).
As for what happened at my house that night, the problem had been that Ron & Sean couldn’t enjoy me sexually without opening the door to enjoying each other–they were afraid to touch; both beautiful, beautiful sensual young guys who undoubtedly felt interested in an experiment but were appropriately very frightened (and it seemed to me in retrospect that both were feeling exactly the same thing and equally). For guys, but not for us women, there’s the risk of exclusion, risk of the loss of male friendships, maybe not getting a job, maybe being rejected by a woman because she doesn’t want a penis that’s been in a man’s anus ever, the great threat of parental horror when a grown child may be gay or bi– they were not inappropriately scared. We women are second class citizens anyway, so a charge of lesbianism does little or nothing to reduce our status, but because straight men rule the world, a charge of “maybe gay” involves a precipitous and devastating loss of status for a guy–unfortunately. So your honesty is great!
The only other porn actor you were attracted to I worked with (or knew) was David Morris, who was definitely bisexual and admitted it–the only time I ever saw two men together in my life was in a Live Sex Show in the summer of 1980 on 8th Avenue opposite where Show World had been. He and Mark Stevens had did “69” and then David lifted his legs around Mark’s neck and assumed the role of a woman. I wonder if he was filmed in any gay roles? I never heard of any but your fantasy about HIM was fitting!
Your tidbits about art history and Greek philosophy were delightful. They’re both gone now so I can mention that both my parents were college professors, and I have a big library here. And did you know that Alice Neel (she had a show at the Metropolitan Museum in NY in 2020 or 2021) told her students to do anything for a living other than commercial art because that would ruin them? It was delightful to learn that you were a photographer who “wouldn’t” also!
Now for the raunchy stuff I know you want to hear. Ron’s penis was so enormous that to fellate him was like trying to get an orange into my mouth, and on the set of “Cosmopolitan Girls,” he was having trouble getting hard at first, but when he finally was beginning to get an erection, I said to the director: “It’s starting to feel like that Ron Hudd lockjaw.” He assumed a beautiful, shy smile and let out a sweet, flattered, pleasantly embarrassed laugh: “Oh-HO-ho-ho!”, and that became one of those precious moments when he exposed his sensitivity without meaning to. He made me flow like a waterfall, get hot as an oven, and cored my apple perfectly almost every time. I hadn’t known till he died that he’d taken up permanent residence inside me, and that I would feel eviscerated when he exited our world. Porn actors aren’t supposed to love each other but we may begin to, and it shall be one of the greatest regrets of my life that we didn’t take a chance on love.
Wonderful to hear from you! –Lisa
I’ve never understood the hang up about bisexuality. The ancient Greeks didn’t have a hangup about it. Neither did the ancient Romans. Julius Caesar had numerous affairs with men; ancient writings described him as ‘every wife’s husband and every man’s wife.’
The great myth about bisexuals is that we screw anything that moves. I’ve attended bisexual discussion groups and in our talks I’ve discovered this really isn’t the case. We tend to be picky. It isn’t just about the physical attraction; there has to be an emotional connection, unlike many straight guys I know who are all about the conquest.
Truthfully, growing up I wasn’t attracted to other boys. I couldn’t relate to them because the majority of the boys I knew could only talk about sports, which I found boring. The majority of my friends were girls. Why? Because they liked to talk about art and literature. I did have one male friend though who could hold a conversation about more than some sport figure’s stats.
You may appreciate this story because it illustrates your point about the loss of male friendship. One day we were speaking about the people we had crushes on. We decided to write their names down and then share our lists. He wrote down the names of five girls in our class; I wrote down:
Julie Newmar, who played Catwoman on Batman;
Anne Francis who had starred as Honey West;
Martha Graham, the modern dancer;
He was shocked that I had included the names of two men. I simply said: “Have you seen Booby Darin? I like his smile and he’s really talented. Have you heard Mack The Knife? And have you heard Sacha’s song La Belle Vie? These guys are so talented!”
He understood why I had included Anne and Julie, but he never understood my including 2 men and an old woman! Martha must have been in her 70s at the time! I am not sure which shocked him more~ my including 2 men or an elderly woman.
But for me, it was the talent I found sexy. Age and gender didn’t matter.
He barely spoke to me after that.
Isn’t it interesting that of my 6 favorite porn actors, 3 also appeared in gay films. Mark Wallice appears in one gay film that I know of, A Matter of Size (1984). Randy Paul appeared in several. His scene with John Davenport in In Hot Pursuit (1987) is a scorcher. David Morris also appeared in several gay films, the most famous being Centurians of Rome (1981). He is probably best remembered for the pool table scene with Marilyn Chambers in insatiable (1980). I read that David passed away in 1999. How lucky you are to have known him. What a beautiful guy!
I don’t remember your co-star Steve Elliott. I did a quick search and found a recent interview.
Enjoy! I listened to the interview with Veronica Hart who also talked about the times the sex was more than a performance!
There was an exhibition of sculpture of the ancient world at the Metropolitan here in NY a few years ago where the introductory notes explained to the public that a range of sexual and gender types was openly permitted much of the time then, and there was the most beautiful sculpture of a hermaphrodite, whose curvature looked feminine yet had a man’s legs, a little penis and breasts! Alas, I’m afraid taboos about “anything in between” are an unfortunate part of the legacy of Judeo-Christian culture. I read in Playboy in 1981 in an article about bisexuals that sex to us–according to their research–was a little bit more important to us than other people, but you’re quite right: that doesn’t mean that anything goes! When I was young enough to have a lot of partners (still pretty and before the age of AIDS) I thought of sex not unlike going to a restaurant: I wouldn’t go back if the satisfaction was lacking, sometimes even when that meant getting paid pretty nicely.
…And is it true that men “naturally” have different interests than women so that culturally engaged, sensitive boys (as you had been) can’t converse with other boys? I certainly hope not, but there was a great Ms. Magazine article back in the day about those short-lived men’s liberation groups of the 1970s, where they listed men’s TYPICAL DEFENSES in the way of conversation: talking about sports, talking about investments, financial issues, the job, and more things on a list of subjects identified as the superficial stuff men jaw about to avoid intimacy! I’ve heard that for straight guys, not just gay men, women make better friends and confidantes because men are so much discouraged from exposing themselves. I’m sorry your “outing” yourself to a male friend meant a loss, but it’s his loss–many straight guys today will accept a gay friend (at work, as a neighbor, in the basketball court, even in High School) if the gay guy understands the boundaries.
Thank you for the names of these movies, because I’m always interested in watching the porno that people enjoy. I haven’t mentioned this but debating the anti-porn lobby has been a passion of mine for 42 years now, so I must keep up with what people are seeing, both the old stuff and more recent. Some time ago The Rialto Report suggested that I give an interview about David Morris, and I’m eager to at some point because he didn’t have a good reputation but I knew him VERY well, and saw his good side. We were always in tune. As for the other people you mentioned, Sean was a LOVELY guy inside and out, and Veronica Hart one of the most intelligent, really nice ladies in the Business. She had a degree in Dramatic Arts from the University of Utah (she said so in an interview so I can repeat it) so no wonder she was such an excellent actress and obviously so sharp. She could dance and strip as well as any Hollywood actress too; I saw her live at Show World and I never heard such robust applause for one of us–she knocked them right out.
Really hope you get to do an interview about David Morris. He made over 250 films. Surely directors and producers wouldn’t have cast him if he had such a bad reputation. He deserves to be remembered.
You said: “For straight guys, not just gay men, women make better friends and confidantes.” I understand gay men and straight women being friends. Look at Rock Hudson and Liz Taylor. It must have been so refreshing for her to be around a guy who was not going to make a move on her, a guy who appreciated her company, her wit, etc. I’m not sure about straight men and straight women though. Remember that Sigmund Freud poster: “What’s on a man’s mind?” (It was a nude woman.) Then again, maybe the younger generation has fewer hangups than our generation. They came up with the phrase ‘friends with benefits’. On the other hand, there’s another phrase that’s tossed around quite a lot these days: ‘emotional cheating’. The husband is caught having an affair. He says: ‘I didn’t have sex with her. We’re friends. We just talked.’ The wife says: ‘It’s still cheating. You confided in her when you should have been confiding in me.’
My mother used to tell me I had too many women friends and if I got married, I would have to drop them because “no woman is going to put up with her man hanging around other women! She is going to suspect you of fooling around.”
So, maybe friendships work for straights who are single; for married persons, I’m not so sure.
I attended a lecture once ~ one of those “men are from Mars; women are from Venus lectures.” The speaker began by asking the audience: “What do you think men want?”
Some of the answers from women: ‘a bigger dick’, ‘more beer’, ‘a threesome’.
The speaker replied, “No. They want intimacy. They don’t know how to get it. They haven’t been socialized to be intimate. They discover masturbation as a secret, furtive action. When they have come, they turn off the light and go to sleep. It’s how they act after sex with women. Women want intimacy after sex. They want to bask in the afterglow with their partners. Men want it too, but they don’t know how to be intimate.”
While re-reading your love story, it occurred to me that perhaps Ron was one of men the speaker was referring to.
Or..how does this grab you?
Ron was your scaffolding. Let me elaborate. People are like buildings. Just as a building needs a foundation, so does a person. This foundation usually comes from the family as it’s the first social group an individual knows. Then, as a person grows, he / she meets others (for example teachers and coaches) who become influential, who offer support.
After a building’s foundation is laid and the walls are put up, scaffolding is set up so the construction crew can do additional work. Scaffolding supports the materials and the workers. Scaffolding also supplies a degree of support to the building. When the work is completed, the scaffolding is removed. It is temporary by design.
I have known several people I considered to be more than friends. They were family. When they betrayed my trust, I was crushed. When they disappeared from my life, I was devastated. Then it occurred to me that they had done their job. They were only meant to be in my life temporarily. They were like a building’s scaffolding. They had served their purpose. They were there to get me to the next level.
Perhaps the Fates put Ron in your life as a necessary scaffolding. He was there on your first film and your last. He helped you on your journey down this new path.
I am not saying you didn’t have a love story. Far from it. What I’m saying is that Ron may have been the emotionally unavailable male afraid of intimacy that the speaker I saw referred to. However, it may make it easier for you to deal with his loss if you think of him as a beautiful spirit who was a scaffold ~ there when you needed one, removed when you didn’t.
Greg, what a perfectly amazing analysis of my experience. I was aware of the fact that my sexual relationship with Ron Hudd and other pornographic actors was like scaffolding! I couldn’t have turned tricks and had strange men fondle my vagina and suck on my breasts at the Melody for five years without some beautiful, good, satisfying sex just for myself. (Unfortunately, some prostitutes take a pimp because they want someone they can enjoy having sex with–it’s a factor.)
As for what you said about Ron being an emotionally unavailable male afraid of intimacy? That is just exactly what I was trying to say his problem was, only the tragedy of his life is that he apparently just got worse and worse. I’m not exaggerating when I say that in the most recent photo of him before his death at 68 last year he looked like a mean, retired, Midwestern cop– the kind who would have reacted callously to the death of George Floyd. What a far cry from that soul who said “You are the most beautiful woman in the world–I must have you” just as if he were a 13-year old boy at a first Junior High School dance daring to ask a girl to be his partner.
There were other times also when I saw sweetness and goodness which he, without exception, only let out unintentionally. Before that great scene in Wild Innocents, I was actually upset for a moment because the director’s assistant told me I had to leave my sneakers on because I have bunions. Having intercourse with my shoes on was going to be uncomfortable, but as it turned out, since it was supposed to be summer camp, it looked good, but the next thing she did was tell me I couldn’t wear my clip-on earrings because they looked too much like a stripper onstage. “The holes in my ears will show,” I told her, and she handed me a hideous pair (hers) that looked just like little worms, which I put on because I didn’t want an argument… and also because she was not at all pretty and I knew she was jealous.
When Ron put his hand to my back to give my body some support as we did “69” but my leg was lifted in the air because I didn’t want to put my dirty shoes to the bed, I could physically feel that he was not just propping me up, but trying to comfort me because he knew I didn’t like what had just happened. You see, he was showing some kindness and understanding but the damning thing about him is that if he had realized it, he wouldn’t have!
The agonizing thing for me about Ron Hudd’s death now is not having missed the chance to speak or see one another because I could see that we’d grown apart so much that the reunion wouldn’t be a good one–not unlike Ron Jeremy, he appeared to have become the opposite of what he’d once been: a very insensitive man and frankly a terrible artist. (I’ve seen wallpaper infinitely more aesthetic than the junk he passed off for his work.)
Now, the agonizing thing for me is that if I had dared to suggest that he and I have a love affair years ago, there’s a chance his life would not have failed, and although I’ve got a lot of nerve, in my opinion, it did. That scene of ours in “Heather” was just like a fairy tale, but my handsome prince (he really was) turned into a toad (the fairy tale isn’t supposed to go that way), and if I’d “kissed him”–offered my love– he might not have; his life might have taken a different course. At any rate, he was obviously better off with us in New York where he did beautiful paintings supported by X-rated acting; his life might have taken a different course had he remained here, too.
The truth is that I feel guilty about what happened to him, and I hope nobody “pooh-pooh’s” my scorching sense of remorse about not having suggested we try having a relationship. But, what happened to my beautiful, talented onscreen lover is so tragic that I can’t help feeling remorse. He apparently killed his own spirit.
On a lighter note, I have a couple of happily married guy friends (one a former sculptor teacher, another I went to HS with) whom I occasionally speak to, and when we have great conversations that often go over an hour, I often think the man probably doesn’t talk so much and so intensely to his wife in the course of a day. Unfortunately, one thing that can undermine intimacy is familiarity, for married couples often stop communicating. And as for a friendship between a straight guy (they are) and a mostly straight woman like me? You’re right–it has to be the phone! I remember that poster about “what’s on a man’s mind” too! No experienced sex worker underestimates this the way most women do.
Another wonderful piece by the Rialto report. I found this especially touching, as I feel a lot of us can relate to the feeling described here. The bittersweet unresolved emotions of wanting to connect with an old lover/friend/co-worker. My heart sank when I read the ending because I was truly hoping Lisa would say she got to see or talk to Ron one more time. Truly heartbreaking, but I am guessing he was deeply moved by her reaching out.
This really resonates: “I asked him how he thought he could stay anonymous by doing something so public, so visible, as sex films?
He answered with a simple conviction: “If anyone ever asks me about it, I will tell them they are mistaken. They are getting me mixed up with someone else.”
How sad and almost eerie.
My condolences , Lisa Be.
Thank you, Julia. I love every one of you who has responded since this arguably was one of life’s most disappointing, frustrating, shocking experiences. Yes, people die, only what I discovered is that for us not to have spoken apparently would have been better, for in looking at the recent pictures of him I found out that like Ron Jeremy, he apparently had destroyed himself. He looked mean, his artwork was selling but was terrible, and that stunning physical beauty which had been an outward expression of a kind of inner beauty he was ashamed of had vanished. I didn’t recognize him except for his nose!
The time for some sort of reconciliation between us was long past–his soul was gone. I nevertheless am trying to develop some kind of memorial to his youthful self when he was a fantastic artist and a stunning, sexual Adonis who provided me with sexual joy and satisfaction in a challenging era of my life. Stay tuned, everyone.
One more thing: Julia, you are right about what a divided self he was. How could he possibly believe he wouldn’t be known with a tattoo on his arm? And with such a distinctive voice? He could have gone to Amsterdam (for he could pass as Dutch!) and learned to imitate an accent. I didn’t need to be a psychiatrist to see he wanted to get caught and was in denial of it.
Give yourself a hug, Lisa
I was perusing some dirty stuff on the interwebs and I came across the Pink Ladies. I noticed Ron was in it. In his scene, he portrayed a pervert watching some ladies shower after a game of racquetball or something like it. He did a good job of making a perverted face while watching them. Ron likely had a good sense of humor.
Samantha Foxx and Kandi Barbour both look really beautiful in that movie. If I were playing tennis and spotted a handsome guy watching I don’t think I’d share him with my friend if he followed us into the Ladies’ Room, though. It looked to me as if he enjoyed that one. –Lisa
Just want to clarify one point. It’s clear from your story that Ron was emotionally unavailable. When I wrote: “perhaps Ron was one of men the speaker was referring to”, I used the word perhaps intentionally because the speaker (whose lecture I attended) was talking about men who are “disconnected and emotionally unavailable” once the sex act is over. It was the biggest complaint women had about the men in their lives so he wanted to focus on it. As I mentioned, he attributed this behavior to conditioning: sex for teenage boys is a secret, furtive act. Once climax is reached, it’s time to sleep. Only Ron’s lovers can speak to whether or not he was “emotionally unavailable” after sex. I certainly can’t.
As for why men are emotionally unavailable in general ~ not just after sex ~ well, I’m sure there must be a disapproving family member who set the person down this path.
My story: As a kid, I loved watching MGM musicals. Some of my favorites were Rose Marie, Meet Me in St. Louis, Neptune’s Daughter, Summer Stock, An American in Paris, Down Argentine Way ~ anything with Jeanette MacDonald, Judy Garland, Esther Williams, Leslie Caron, and Carmen Miranda. But it was Singing in the Rain that changed everything. It wasn’t just entertainment; it was a revelation! After seeing Donald O Connors’s performance (Make ‘Em Laugh) I knew what I wanted to do. I wanted to dance like him! I began telling everyone ~ family members and my parent’s friends ~ that I wanted to study dance and be the next Donald O’ Connor. The reaction? Disapproval and Embarrassment. “Boys don’t dance. It’s for sissies.” This didn’t make sense to me because Donald and Gene (Kelly) weren’t sissies. Anyway, I became emotionally unavailable. I learned not to talk about my interests (dance, art, theater) if I sensed family members would give me grief. Once I left home and met people with the same interests, I was able to be open again.
Could it be that Ron had a similar upbringing? I wonder if he received push back from his family because he chose being an artist ~ as opposed to a lawyer, doctor, engineer etc ~ as his career? I also wonder if he “sold out” and returned to his mid-western roots to say, “See. You said I could never make a living as a painter. Well, you’re wrong. Look at how much someone paid me for my last painting!”
Or perhaps his changing his style had less to do with proving something to his family and more to do with finances. Look at some of the stuff that comes out of Hollywood today. I’m sure a lot of actors have made movies just for the paycheck. They knew the movies were turkeys from the get-go. They needed the money.
Hi, Greg– I’m kidding but not really when I write that you may have been reading my mind. My Cousin Debi (she’s my second cousin, our grandmothers were sisters, but she’s my best friend these days, family ties aside) said to me: “Did he [Ron Hudd] have a father who was in the military?” Given how sensitive little boys are shot down for their sensitivity by Daddies who wore a uniform, that’s a very real possibility, but unfortunately, I don’t know. Then, just yesterday, a close male friend of mine who also happens to be my computer specialist was helping me with something and saw the most recent photo of Ron from his obituary which I had on display here, and he said to me: “Did that guy come from a military family?” And he said that he’d had uncles who had been and that he recognized the whole look–the callous, arrogant expression, the insensitivity; I am sorry to say that Ron apparently was under some kind of influence like that during his later years!
What a shame that you were told dancing was for sissies! How terrible! My father was a macho fellow but, I thank God, would have known better than that, and probably would have said: “That would be something to enjoy and work hard at, but you need a skill.”
I have been trying to find out why Ron stopped painting and started making computer art which wasn’t art, and I reached about the same conclusion as your guess: that in the Midwest, if you’re not making a good living, you haven’t fulfilled your masculine gender role, and that he couldn’t get the respect of his relatives (and neighbors) if he continued to be “for real” but unknown and not raking in the bucks. Cousin Debi still lives in Michigan where I was born, and jumped on my saying this: “Oh, absolutely! If you’re not making any money you’re nothing here!” What makes this more mysterious, however, is that I think he had a Master’s degree because he mentioned to me that he was qualified to teach, and that has prestige and a halfway decent living wage. I had assumed he must have gotten married and had to support children when I saw the dreadful change, but he hadn’t (as far as the public records show) so I’m mystified.
I am praying that I can find out more about what appear to have been a convergence of bad influences during the second part of his life, which apparently did not go well, and that is a source of great pain to me.
Oh yes–and as to being available after sex? The only time we ever had sex off-camera was that night with Sean, and although my memory isn’t clear, after each of them had an orgasm (not I; my little cat is very picky–smile) we were all tired and all fell asleep like three mummies lined up in my narrow queen-sized bed. But I’d be willing to bed he’d act the part of just rolling over without a goodnight kiss if we’d been alone.
I apologize for not responding sooner. I’ve been having problems with my Internet provider and couldn’t logon.
How telling that 2 people looked at Ron’s photo and reached the same conclusion!
I used to imagine Ron’s story being akin to that of the artist August Rodin, an emotionally unavailable genius devoted to his art.
Now I think his tale is more similar to that of the Prodigal Son. In the Biblical tale the plot centers on the younger son who, impatient and greedy, asks his father for his inheritance. The father agrees, but the son wastes his money, eventually becoming homeless and destitute. In the end, to the son’s great surprise, he is welcomed back into the family by his father and brother.
I think in Ron’s case he didn’t squander his inheritance. He didn’t ask for it! Instead he chose to purse a life as an artist on his own terms, to his father’s dismay. He left home and managed to support himself by making films. It was a win-win situation. He had the free time to develop his craft because he wasn’t tied to a 9 to 5 job. And he had no-strings sex.
Everything went well until AIDS came on the scene.
I wouldn’t be surprised if AIDS is what drove Ron back to his small town roots.
New York in the 70s and 80s was a sexual candy store. Studio 54, Plato’s Retreat, The Loft, Danceteria all presented a smorgasbord of revolving sex partners. Rudolf Piper, Danceteria impresario said: “Those were still the good old days of sex and drugs and rock & roll…and, thank God, we all got plenty of it. The five floors of this supermarket of style were where gays, straights, artists, junkies, goths, skinheads, lost up towners, sexy Jersey chicks, pinheads, Studio 54 leftovers, B&Ts, weirdos from outer space, drag queens, S&M freaks, hookers, performers of all sorts, East Villagers galore, not to mention musicians of all kinds, got together. We lived over there! Seven nights a week, week after week…it was so good, and we all thought it would never end. It was more than just entertainment—it was a lifestyle, and it was a school. People stop me on the street all the time, telling me how important Danceteria was in giving them a direction and how much it changed their lives, for the better or for the worse. It didn’t matter—it was well worth it!” (Timeout November 10, 2014)
Remember, in the beginning, no one knew anything about AIDS – who caught it and how it was transmitted. First, it was a gay disease. Then it was incorrectly inferred that Haitians were at a greater risk. Then the CDC reported the first cases of AIDS in women on January 7, 1983. And because Reagan never spoke about it ~he mentioned AIDS publicly for the first time on September 17, 1985! ~ the confusion and fear only intensified. (When the HIV / AIDS epidemic began, the Reagan administration’s first reaction was chilling. It appeared to treat the epidemic as a joke.)
Some adult performers immediately stopped working. Others transitioned to working behind the camera. Ron may have felt the temptations of NYC too overwhelming and decided to get out ~ of the business and the city.
And the once disapproving father welcomed him back home with open arms: “Come Home. All is forgiven. You’ll be safe here.” I wouldn’t be surprised if it was his father who used his connections to get Ron his first commissions from the local bank!
Ron could have stayed in NYC and taught, but I as I said, I really think the temptations of the city could have been too much to resist. Besides, I don’t think teaching would have suited him. Ron was just a couple years older than me. When I was younger, a common refrain was: “Those who can, do; those who can’t do, teach.” These words could have haunted Ron. Bank commissions were one thing; teaching would have been the ultimate betrayal of his talent.
And so began the new direction in Ron’s life, a treadmill that was hard to get off of.
Greg, thank you so much for the additional insight, for it hadn’t occurred to me that AIDS might have driven Ron Hudd back to the Midwest, for I had assumed–on the basis of what I knew about him–that a convergence of other feelings had multiplied over time: Getting sick of being thought of as King Phallus, having to say the same old sorts of lines in the same old sorts of situations, tired of casual sex, tired of the revolving door of women he worked with he began to realize (I’m taking some liberty here) he wasn’t relating to properly. Another factor is that he was 32 in 1985 and although the guys can work in that venue almost indefinitely (as Ronnie, Ron Jeremy, unfortunately did), I suspect a healthy psychological pressure within suggested to him that making that scene had surpassed the point of diminishing returns–he wasn’t getting any younger. I have no doubt about the fact that when he returned to where his family was (he did) they were inexpressibly relieved that he was away from New York, the movies and that the warmth and personal love he returned to, by contrast, was one of the best moments of his life.
However… I am not at liberty to tell what more I found out. First, I absolutely cannot disclose my source. Second, I have no corroborative information (and I once publicly accused someone of being immoral when I’d received a false report, which I apologized for) so I know I can’t be certain of the veracity of what I picked up. Broadly speaking, the fact that he’d been Ron Hudd and in denial of how famous he was going to get came back and severely walloped him in his personal life three different times. I feel an obligation to point out to any younger person considering being in an X-rated movie that just one single film may make you famous for life–did that not happen to certain women in the Business? Fortunately, I understood that my movies were going to be a permanent part of my identity. For the guys, something I’ve heard before (not about Ron, to be noted) is that if an actor gets used to having sex with pornographic actresses, there may be interference in his ability to relate to other women. For me–in the six or seven love affairs I had since those years–the report was always the same: “Now I’m married to the fortune-teller… I’m as happy as can be… I get my fortune told for free.” In other words, girl, you know what you’re doing to such an extent that you’ve gotten me spoiled. But when the porn actors date a “normal” woman again, and she may not particularly like practicing fellatio, or do it well, there’s a let-down that’s difficult. She’s not a prostitute! I have no solution for this but it’s something to think about.
I remember the extreme promiscuity of the 1970s also and the breaking news (“have you heard of the Gay Cancer?”), the introduction of condoms and the false belief that only homosexuals really needed to worry about AIDS anyway… however, I confess that for a long time, I didn’t use condoms but was just much more selective about whom I’d accept as a partner. (To be noted–I couldn’t use condoms easily because that rubber really hurt my vagina, preferring to slather up with K-Y Jelly and its good Nonoxynol-9). Personally, I don’t think “the temptations of New York” would have been too much for Ron Hudd, to be honest, for we all knew him to be extraordinarily disciplined about sticking with his art, and never had the reputation of being a partyer. You see, I remember the feelings associated with getting “too muched out,” to coin a phrase–too much casual sex, too much risk of big-time fame (that was a factor in quitting for me), and correctly sensing that I was losing moral boundaries as a role began to absorb my identity. On occasion, I was beginning to experience all of that superficiality as depressing.
I love most of your insights, Greg, but I strongly disagree with you about teaching art being a bad idea (or teaching anything being a bad idea). I hadn’t mentioned this (I don’t think) only I became a pornographic actress after having been an artists’ model for many years, and knew almost all the figurative artists in New York from about 1975-1979. I certainly had the impression that being able to teach was a protection for their talent, and besides, some of my best relationships in life were with teachers. Perhaps you might have to see just how bad the work Ron Hudd ended up doing became by contrast to how good (excellent) he had been to see what I mean, for in my opinion, anything but anything would have been better than his making art for the bank. (I haven’t been able to find out if Daddy was military but if so, although it’s true banking and military aren’t far apart, the man had been dead for some time when Ron died so we can’t know if his introduction to commercial art had anything to do with his father or not.)
I’m thinking about a memorial for Ron of some kind but far from being able to tell just how to go about this yet.
I’m guessing that other readers are tired of my comments, so I’ll keep this brief.
First of all, thanks again for sharing your memories and insights of Ron (and the industry). As I said, I have always wondered what happened to him since seeing him for the first time in Bon Appetit. You’ve given me a sense of closure for which I am grateful.
My interest in Ron may appear to many to be obsessive, but it really isn’t. Like many others stuck indoors due to covid, I found myself watching TV programs from my childhood / adolescence on YouTube and wondering whatever happened became of some of the actors / supporting actors. Ron is no different from any of these stars. Well, perhaps the only difference is information about Hollywood stars is easier to find, while information about adult cinema’s pioneers isn’t. This is the main reason I appreciate the Rialto Report. It satisfies the “whatever became of question.”
Secondly, about the phrase: “Those who can, do; those that can’t, teach”. George Bernard Shaw said it in his Man and Superman in 1903. Woody Allen expanded the phrase in Annie Hall in 1977: “those who can’t do, teach; those that can’t teach, teach gym.” Jack Black told the same joke in his School of Rock.
It shows a contempt for education.
I am a teacher. I have even been a teacher trainer. I have the utmost respect for my profession. Unfortunately, in my career I have come to realize that many don’t respect the profession. I am referring to students who disrupt class and are more interested in the text messages they are missing; parents who believe that their kids don’t deserve to fail just for copying something from Wikipedia and passing it off as their own work; and countless others who consider teaching as “nothing more than a job to fall back on when what you really want to do doesn’t work out.”
Also, there seems to be a two-fold opinion of education. If you’re teaching a subject such as History or Philosophy (which I do), you’re “respected” because you studied the subject and thus (allegedly) know what you are talking about and are qualified to teach it. However, if you come to teaching from the Arts, then many people perceive you to be a failure, someone not good enough to have “made it”. It’s different if you’ve had a successful career and you are at an age when you decide to pass on your knowledge and experience. But I heard the following often as a young man when I was pursuing a career in the arts: “You don’t want to teach. You’re too good. Don’t give up. Stick it out.” The implication was clear: Teaching was seen as a failure; it meant you didn’t have what it took to “make the big time.”
I thought Ron, being of the same generation, heard the same thing. This is why I suggested he didn’t pursue a career in education.
In closing, I can’t think of anything else to say about Ron except I wonder what he would say about this conversation between an ex co-star/lover and a fan. Would he be amused or irritated?
Your mind is just wonderful, Greg, and I’m so glad you know all about teaching first-hand! My guess is that such a multiplicity of experience comes with it; each individual must ask: what were my alternatives? –how did teaching shape me? –what opportunities would have come with not doing it and which with doing it? –so that many angles are possible.
With every post I have read here (gratitude, gratitude) and every response I gave that made me think, I have always assumed or imagined Ron could see and hear all of it–out of respect not just for the possibility that some form of continuation of existence occurs after physical death, but just out of respect for him personally. (For example, I saw him act very rude a couple of times but never would tell; he’s died and besides, the good definitely outweighed the bad in him). I’m going to take the liberty of saying that he would have gotten much joy from reading and seeing all of this–smiling now–in Heaven, I doubt you’d need to protect your identity… if spirit exists (in general, and his in particular) then it follows that he might be able to relax and enjoy the past a bit more than in his later years. I doubt he knew he’d receive so much love and attention and would be very, very happy about it. Wouldn’t anybody be? Love, Lisa
Thank you for sharing so much of yourself with the world.
You have a lot of courage and seem very intuitive.
As a teenager growing up in the late 1970s and early 1980s, I loved your voluptuous figure and your cute short hair. I also admired the rings you always wore which were black (sometimes green) and oblong. Kind of a signature touch!
I would love to view your paintings and sculpture.
Would that be possible? Please let me know.