Legendary gay adult industry director Jerry Douglas is in his own hog heaven these days, ready to launch the Off-Broadway production of a new play called The Deep Throat Sex Scandal. Negotiations are under way with a popular star to play the leading role of porn icon Harry Reems.
In an interview from New York in between casting calls (and cigarettes), Douglas told GAYVN his decades of experience in the adult industry helped him with the task of launching this major production, which does involve nudity. One of the reasons he was considered to direct the play is because of his porn background.
“When they first asked me, I told them that they could keep my porn work out of my credits if they wanted, but no, they said they wanted it all in there, and that was one of the reasons why they had sought me out,” said Douglas, whose uncensored credits are on the play’s official site, DeepThroatThePlay.com. “This is the most commercial thing that has ever dropped in my lap.”
Among Douglas’ many gay adult credits are the classics More of a Man, Kiss-Off, Flesh & Blood, Buckle-Roos, Honorable Discharge and The Back Row.
“This is a play about the First Amendment and the second most famous blow job in history,” Douglas added, laughing. “It has comedy, drama, touching moments, history, nudity—and it has a message.
“Also, it’s significant that when I started as a freelance journalist, my first big interview was with Harry Reems just after the Memphis trial. I was one of the first people who interviewed him after the trial.”
Douglas was not only a journalist and the longtime editor of Manshots magazine, but he also has received more gay industry awards from Adult Video News than anyone else for his work in screenwriting and directing.
The play was written by David Bertolino, who created the Halloween theme park Spooky World, and it represents Douglas’ first venture into the New York theater world. The first act of the play depicts the making of Deep Throat with Reems and Linda Lovelace. The second part encompasses the trial during which Reems became the first actor in history to be found guilty on obscenity charges.
The cast will consist of nine actors who play 34 roles. By Off-Broadway standards, it is an enormous production, with two turntables on stage and elaborate costumes, sets and multimedia effects.
“It will be an elaborate production, and if we don’t screw it up, we think it could easily run for years,” Douglas gushed.
Arguably the most successful film ever made, Deep Throat cost between $20,000 and $25,000 to film and grossed more than $600 million.
Sadly, Marilyn Chambers was going to be in the play, but she died recently. The male lead (Reems) is likely to be played by someone who is recognized for his movie roles, but Douglas can’t say who it is until the contract is signed, hopefully sometime within the next few weeks. Douglas auditioned more than 700 people over the course of two recent weeks, and some of the auditions required nudity, he said.
“Everyone seemed to be impressed with the way I handled the nude auditions, but that was second nature to me, of course,” he noted. “Still, they proved a challenge because the Equity regulations for nudity are more stringent than those for adult film productions.”
Douglas worked for many years in the New York theater before his porn career, and now, at age 73, has come full circle. He said he still has a few good porn film ideas in him, but for now he’s concentrating on Deep Throat.
Rehearsals begin in August for an October opening. Douglas sees potential for touring shows in other cities, and he noted he would not be averse to casting actual porn stars in some of the roles.
“I already have a few people in mind,” he said, chuckling.
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