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Happy Birthday, Nina Hartley

AVN Hall of Famer turns 50

Happy Birthday, Nina Hartley

LOS ANGELES - AVN Hall of Fame performer Nina Hartley turns 50 today, marking a milestone as she celebrates 25 years in the adult industry.

"From my very first time in adult, I knew that I was a lifer," Nina told AVN. "Sex is my thing, and sexual entertainment, sex education, and sex discussion is my métier. It’s what I do."

The Berkeley-bred blonde has been doing That Thing since late 1984, when she performed in five hardcore loops in a single debauched day at San Francisco's Lusty Lady Theatre.


"The guy who was shooting the loops was an old hippie who had done light shows at Haight-Ashbury," she said. "He was so good at shooting them that he would edit them in-camera; he'd have a finished, 20-minute loop with very little editing required. That was a rare film experience for me."

Ms. Hartley's first porn video proper was the ill-fated Atom Home Video epic Educating Nina. Written, produced and directed by Juliet "Aunt Peg" Anderson, the movie was an education for Nina in the timeless art of the porno scam.

"Juliet was my mentor for my first couple of years in the business. She had gotten all her friends to invest in this movie. She lost all the money, her investors lost it all — and she never recovered from that. She was one of us, and the company treated her like a rube. It was so wrong.

"It's less of an old boy's club now; back then, I don't think a woman had a chance. There was no recourse, no place to go, no court that would have dealt with it. It was a hard-learned lesson for me, and, I think, one of the reasons I never worked harder on building my own business. I realized that I'm not hard-headed, and I don't have the stomach for dealing with money-men."

Still, self-confessed "polymorphous perverse" Nina persevered with rare enthusiasm at a time when the jizz-biz was a Wild West shootout of drug-soaked sleaze and sketchy, big-money distro deals. She went on to become one of the icons of '80s porn in such titles as Mark Carriere's Debbie Duz Dishes.

"After Deep Throat and The Devil in Miss Jones, that was one of the first 10,000-unit sellers at the brick-and-mortar stores," she recalled. "It's a very fun, light and fluffy little porn movie, and I would love to see it reissued for a new generation of fans."

Back in the day, Ms. Hartley's outstanding ass was hailed as the best in the biz. A quarter-century later, Nina and her glutes still cause lava to erupt from the loins of the lonely.

"I had butt before J. Lo had butt, and I thank my mother for it every day," she laughed. "I used to think my butt was an annoyance that made clothes difficult to fit — so when I got into doing porn, I was delighted to find out that I was blessed with two very popular fetish objects: big, baby-blue eyes and that round butt with a high, small waist. I knew that it was a trademark, and it didn’t bother me at all. I like anal sex; I didn't do anal sex in the beginning, because I didn't do it in my personal life. But I always liked spanking and everything else people want to do to my ass."

Nina named Sunny Lane as an current heir to her 1980s Primo Posterior title.

"Of all the younger women, she is the one I have the most affinity to — she has a good attitude, she's smart, she's bubbly, and I think she's playing an extremely smart game," she said. "Of course, there's lots of great butts in the industry now. Ass is the new tits!"

Today, Nina is happier than ever — still sexy, still freaky, and still smart as the whip wielded by her loving husband, BDSM pro Ernest Greene. At 50, she gets to have her kink and eat it, too.

"I want to thank all of my fans for coming along for the ride," she said. "I want to thank AVN for supporting me, and I look forward to continuing my exploration of all things sexual. And I encourage viewers and performers to be mindful to take care of themselves. Sex is a wonderful thing — use it, don’t abuse it."

Nina ended with some advice to fellow porn actors:

"The most important thing for everyone is not to worry about what we do on camera, but to pay attention to what you do at home with your partner. Be generous, be kind, have fun."

Check out an exclusive Nina Hartley photo gallery here at

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Posted 02/24/2011 by conan77
In my view, there is nothing glamorous or heroic about porn stars. They provide a service that many seems to want, many of them are most businesslike in their conduct, why not? Its a business for them that provide them money and a living and I never understood the need some people have to make some kind of Goddesses of them,or Gods. Thats my 50 cents anyway.
Posted 03/14/2009 by anin
I have been a Nina fan right from the 1st time I saw her, and have been lucky enough to have met her 3 times, which I say is pretty good considering I live in Canada, the last time I saw her in person was back about 02, the wind down of her dancing tours, just outside Detroit, it was only a 4 hour drive to go see my goddess,so yes I had a pic taken with her, and we had some private time,, which I ended up giving her a massage as her heels kill her,,,,and she liked it, I will meet her again someday, that will be another "LUCKY " day for me! Happy Birthday to the QUEEN !!
Posted 03/12/2009 by thejones
Yes, Jenn, before Nina Harley the human race didn't know ANYTHING about human sexuality! Thank goodness for people like you and Nina who, armed with nothing but a butt plug and a torch are showing us the way. The only thing Nina Hartley teaches us is that some broads don't when to hang up the G-string.
Posted 03/11/2009 by jennramsey
Nina, you've been an inspiration to so many of us! Thank you so much for showing the world - and fellow pervy girls - that sex is fun! Much love - Jenn
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Nina Hartley   sex   porn   sexo   Ernest Greene   Ira Levine