CHATSWORTH, Calif. - Actor Charles Dera has his biggest role to date as King Leonidas in Michael Ninn's The Four, which Ninn Worx_SR will release in August.
Dera has been working in porn off and on for about a year and a half. The Four is one of the most eagerly anticipated releases of the year, and Dera's participation in it is bound to raise his industry profile.
"Unfortunately, Leonidas is dead right from the get-go," Dera told AVN. "So every time I'm seen it's a flashback. The beginning of the movie shows my death. I'm lying on the bed with all the women surrounding me. I have a few things I say with different girls."
He does get to have sex, in flashback, with Brea Bennett, who plays his vengeance-bent widowed queen.
Dera describes Ninn as "a great guy, fun to be around. He really made me feel like I was part of the family. He was incredible, a pleasure to work with. He's just so passionate about his work."
The movie is strikingly visual, but Dera said it also had a hefty script. "There was a ton of dialogue. My character, no. I'm pretty much dead. But everyone else had a ton of dialogue."
Dera has particular praise for his male co-star Marco Banderas, who plays the Persian king Xerxes. "Marco did a great job. Marco has a lot. I was really surprised at how much he did and how well he did it."
"We worked very hard, all of us, on that production. We did everything in the studio, but we had real black panthers, real stallions there, it was the real deal."
Dera also has a role in this season's other big epic, Digital Playground's Pirates II: Stagnetti's Revenge. "I don't really have much of a character," he said. "I was a pirate and I'm in a sex scene [with Stoya]. There's no dialogue."
The 28-year-old actor was named Best New Stud of 2007 by the X-Rated Critics Organization (XRCO) earlier this year. A former model and Chippendale's dancer with mainstream acting experience, he lives in Las Vegas and comes to L. A. to work sporadically.
"I enjoy the job and it is good money," Dera said. But he has other business interests as well as a parallel career as a Mixed Martial Arts fighter.
"I pretty much stay low-key. Porn's great. If I stay in it, cool, if not, that's fine. I will do whatever I feel to be the best thing at that time."
But like the rest of the world, he's looking forward to the Ninn blockbuster.
"I'm pretty excited about The Four. I can't wait to see it."
For a preview, visit www.ninnworx_sr.com.