STUDIO CITY, Calif.—Nearly 100 adult industry professionals and fans, including some absent from the porn scene for more than a decade, came out on Sunday afternoon to the Sportsmen's Lodge on Ventura Boulevard to celebrate the life of veteran director Fred "F.J." Lincoln, with over a dozen friends and family members expressing their thoughts on his passing. Lincoln, whose real name was Fred Lincoln Piantadosi, died on January 16 after a long illness.
For a photo gallery of the event on AVN.com, click here.
The event was moderated by Lincoln's longtime friend Christian Mann, who had hired Lincoln to direct several movies for his company, Video Team, and was pleased to remember that, "The constant thing with Freddie was, no matter what was going on, he was always that guy, that happy Freddie."
Surprisingly, one of the most lyrical raconteurs was former talent agent William Margold, who was the first to speak.
"With a voice that conjured up thoughts of garden gravel, a laugh that could melt an iceberg, and a passion for living that will give those he meets in the afterworld a new glow, Fred Lincoln was truly a man uniquely fit to strut his stuff on the stage of life for all to see and to admire," Margold began. "He was a product of the ultra-rebellious '60s on the mean streets of New York where the word 'peace' was also spelled p-i-e-c-e, and the word 'love' could also be spelled l-u-s-t. If anyone was designed to be the image for the outlaws on movie posters that knows what the glorious illegal days of XXX in the '70s were, it was most certainly Fred Lincoln."
Margold went on to recall how both he and Lincoln had had their cocks supposedly bitten off during movies, with Margold's "economy size chorizo sausage" having been taken home by him and cooked with eggs, spices and relish, concluding, "And it is my sincere hope that Fred Lincoln is going to be remembered by many of those who were so fortunate to know him, as they salute him today, with lots of spice and considerable relish."
Retired actress Tori Welles, who prefers to be called by her real name Brittania, came to the microphone and assured the crowd that had Lincoln been there that day, "He would have said, 'Come on, kid, get up there; it's a boring party. Let's go...You guys are a bunch of bores'; that's what he would say."
Brittania expressed gratitude for the many times Lincoln had helped her even as her career was coming to an end.
"He actually made me move into the same condo building as him so he could get me places on time," she recalled. "I was at the end of my career and I met Paul Norman, and I found out I was pregnant and Freddie was one of the first calls I made. We had the kids together. I mean, I have pictures of Angelica and Nicolas and Joshua in the bathtub together, and I know the boys, when they got a little older, Fred would just laugh and laugh because they didn't want to hang out with Angelica anymore because she kept painting their nails different colors and letting her do hair styles, and Freddie just thought that was the funniest thing, and he's like, 'They're going to want her doing that in 10 years.' She came over and helped me years ago, and the boys were like, 'Why don't we hang out with them anymore?'"
Indeed; shortly before his death, Lincoln asked Brittania to cut long silver locks because, "I can't die looking like a hippie," and when it was done, he exclaimed, "Now I look like a rock star!"
"He loved Angelica more than life itself," she assured. "That's why he lasted as long as he did...Freddie had a wonderful life, and in our conversation, he told me exactly that: 'The only reason I'm going to be pissed about going is that I won't be with Angelica.' So I've had good times with Freddie, and he always knew how to make me smile. It was just like, 'Pick yourself up, kid, and walk through it. Enjoy it every day.' I'm glad I was one of his friends and I'm happy he was part of my life."
Lincoln's love of betting on horse races played a large part in producer Howie Klein's memories of him.
"Even though I hadn't seen Freddie in a long time, or Patti, they were a big part of my life," Klein said. "In the late '70s, early '80s, we did a lot of work together, we made a lot of movies. For several years, I probably was with him every day. If we weren't in pre-production or making a movie or post-production at Caballero, we were at the racetrack. My fondest memories of Freddie are of going to the racetrack, which we did a lot, and you never heard anything until you heard Freddie's rough voice screaming at the top of his lungs at a horse coming down the stretch. People would stop and turn around to see where that sound was coming from. He loved the races...I remember one day he hit an exotic bet and he won about 25 grand and he was like a little kid, telling me how he stayed up all night picking these horses.
"He had these ups and downs at the track, and it was sort of a mirror of our lives, the highs and the lows," he continued. "The highs were so much higher and the lows were low. I hope you remember the highs. And Patti was always there. When Angelica was just born, Patti used to bring her and change her right in front of us on the table there...He was only 10 years older than I was, but I always made fun of him. I remember when Patti was pregnant, I told Freddie, 'Your little girl's gonna come out, take one look at you and go, "Grandpa!"' I have fond memories of Freddie and Patti, and he lived a great life, and let's celebrate it today."
One little-seen personality from adult's "golden era" is Eric Edwards, who began performing in loops in the late '60s, but though retired, he offered his first memories of Lincoln in New York City.
"I met Freddie back in the early New York days," Edwards told the assemblage. "God knows what the date was, but it was back in the time when this business was just beginning, and he was an actor back then. So was I. That was probably the closest I got to him, simply because of the camaraderie of that small a group, and then somehow or other, we both came out to California in our individual lives."
Noting his jealousy of Lincoln's flowing locks, Edwards reflected that, "I could never grow long hair like he did. I tried, I tried, but when I got long hair, it kind of Afro'd out and everything. I could never have the long hair and I was always jealous of that. I think the last time I remember Freddie was when Patti and he hired me as cameraman on a shoot next to a freeway, and I had to deal with the noise and everything, but they're all very fond memories."
Lincoln's son, Charles Lupula, Skyped in to let the crowd know how much he respected his dad, and even accepted the fact that although Lincoln had named the child "Joey," he was only too happy to call Charles by his chosen name.
"When I started calling myself that, he started calling me 'Charlie,' and I feel good that he respected that choice in my life," Lupula said. "He was my dad, and I've been very happy he and I got a closer relationship in the last few years of his life. We weren't that close when I was a teenager, because every teenager is rebellious and headstrong. My father was a pretty headstrong person himself, and once we came to realize how much alike we were, it brought us closer together, and I have so many stories about him and so many things he's told me and so many things I remember about him. He touched so many people. My father, I'm going to miss him. I'm going to miss talking to him. I'm going to miss being able to have the most inappropriate father/son conversations ever. I could tell you some of the shit we talked about, and it's just amazing, you know? But I'm gonna miss him a lot, but this is not about being sad about his death; it's about celebrating his life. I learned a lot about being myself and following your dreams and never letting anybody get in your way."
One surprise visitor was veteran actress Hyapatia Lee, who described Lincoln as "a unique spirit."
"When I had first gotten into the business and went to New York City for the first time and met him, I felt so good to be in this business, because I thought if somebody like him was involved in the business in the way that he was, this had to be a fabulous place to be," she said. "He brought many a smile to my face, made me feel very good about life and love and sex and everything in between. I wasn't around to see him in the last days of his life, but I will never forget the impression he made on me in my early days in the career; he was a fabulous person and I will deeply, deeply miss him."
Due to the failure of some electronics, pre-recorded video clips from Lincoln's first wife Tiffany Clark as well as from Rocco Siffredi and Joey Silvera could not be shown, though Mann recounted a few of Siffredi's thoughts.
"Too bad you don’t get to hear Rocco talk about Freddie coming to Italy and discovering him and bringing him over and helping him with his broken English and helping him navigate the waters," Mann stated, "because it's a pretty cool story and it's one that could only occur with a guy like Freddie Lincoln and Rocco," adding, "And who knows what Joey Silvera would have said?"
Mann then brought up Patti Rhodes, Lincoln's estranged wife, who talked about her life both with him and without him, while noting that despite the fact that they couldn't live together, they still loved each other, loved their children, and spent holidays together.
"I met Freddie 20 years ago," she said. "I went to Reb's office to cast a movie, and for a couple of fantastic years after that, we were pretty much inseparable—and when I first met Fred was when he had his first health scare. He had gone to the doctors and they told him that he had cirrhosis, and he asked how bad, and they told him not to make any plans for the summer, and he was like, well, I'll fix that. Fred never drank again after that, never did drugs after that, and we started having a healthier lifestyle but no less exciting than it was before."
Rhodes also reported on the couple's love of betting on both race horses and card games, and how several of their happiest personal moments were related to gambling.
"We spent a lot of time at the casinos," she admitted. "Angelica took her first steps in the penthouse of Bally's. We spent a lot of time at card games. I mean, we didn't have a birthday party that didn't end in a poker game. We spent a lot of time at the race track. The year Angelica was born, we won the Pick Six for the third time that year. That was that $32,000 win Howie was talking about, and when she was a C-section instead of a simple procedure we had to pay for, we went to the hospital with a shoebox full of cash and made a deal for 20 grand and paid her off... We used to take the kids to the racetrack every Christmas to get them out of the house so the parents could get together. One Christmas—this was a couple of days before—'Man In The Red Suit' won pretty big, so Christmas was huge that year. We went to Toys R Us and they had to follow us home with a truck."
Rhodes also described the couple's love of travel, and how when a producer would bankroll a shoot in a foreign country or even just another part of the U.S., the couple would stay an extra day or so after the production wrapped to see the sights or visit relatives.
And then there were the men with the machine guns:
"Freddie loved the ocean, so we took a few trips to Hawaii," she said. "We took a trip to St. Maarten, and just when we were supposed to leave for the airport, there was a hurricane coming in. So our flight was gonna leave on time, so we go down, I'm all packed, ready to go—Freddie is in the ocean, because the waves were really big, because there's a hurricane coming. Then this guy with a machine gun came and sent us off to the airport. That wasn't our first time with guys with machine guns on beaches. We got married on a beach in Cabo at sunset and Freddie's poker buddies were there, so after our wedding, Freddie went to the poker game and I went dancing with Joey Silvera and so the next night, we were really celebrating, getting romantic on the beach and the guy with the machine gun—'Go to your room!' And Freddie was like, 'I don't wanna go to my room.' The guy with a machine gun, he's arguing with! So we had to go to our room."
"Freddie and I were probably separated for about as long as we were married," she concluded. "We never got divorced; we separated for 10 or 12 years, something like that, but we always had our holidays together, we always raised our daughter together, and we were always there for each other when things were tough. We could always count on each other. No matter how bad we would fight, we would always be there for each other, and I was glad I could be there at the end, because Freddie and hospital food was like a royal battle. Angelica would bring him oysters, I would bring him turkey. One of the things Freddie truly missed during the last part of his illness was the ability to eat whatever other people ate, and we tried to compromise on it. But not many people get to have somebody who's there for so much over the course of your life no matter what, and Freddie always was, and I'll miss him for that. But I also got to see like daily a lot of love for my daughter, and a lot of his strength and how he cares about people."
Following her mother to the stage was Angelica Piantadosi, who began by placing a white rose on her father's director chair, which flanked the podium on the left, while a poster from one of Lincoln's favorite movies, stood to the right.
"Probably one of the hardest things is to sit down and try to write a speech about the most amazing man in my life," she began. "He was more than just a father to me; he was really my best friend in life and he always will be. He was really big on us having a relationship where we could tell each other absolutely anything, and that's why I probably know a lot of stories that daughters shouldn't know about their dads but it really made us so strong. I told him absolutely everything, every boy, every mistake, every time I was at a party and needed him to pick me up at 4 in the morning, he was there. One thing I know is, my dad walked into any room, he brought a smile to everyone's face, he made everybody laugh. That smile of his, that beautiful long hair for years. My dad had a passion for living and he did that until the last day he died. My absolute favorite thing to do in life is to sit there and listen to his stories about life; he really had some crazy stories, and he had the best advice for me. It was kind of strange growing up with an older dad, but then I also had all of the experience of a dad that knew what life was...and even during the darkest of times, he sat in the hospital, guided me through life, let me know what to do after he was gone. He used to set goals; like my mom was saying, 'I need to live until she graduates high school,' and I hope he knows he did much more than that. He molded me into a strong, independent woman and I won't take shit from anyone, and he would love that, and in everything I do, I only hope to make him proud and live life to the fullest like he did to the very last day, and I love you forever."
Rhodes then read a letter from actress Vanessa Del Rio, who recalled, "We had many laughs back in the day, on and off the set. I always called you 'Jesus Christ' because I loved your long silver hair and beard. Yes, I know you loved it. Well, you're with him now, still shining your light on us. Rest in peace, my dear friend Fred. Have fun with those cute angels."
The memorial concluded with a short interview that Lincoln had done for documentarian Wesley Emerson about two years before his death. Lincoln noted that soon after he got out of the Marines, he went to work behind the scenes of several major Hollywood movies, and got to observe several famous directors closely, gaining insights he used throughout his own film career. He noted that when someone asked him early on if he expected porn to last, he replied, "As long as there are churches, it will never die. As long as you make it forbidden, people will always want to see it." He described porn as an "uncrafted school for sexuality," and observed, "Why they hate us so much is, we teach people how to enjoy themselves. We are like a cinematic Kama Sutra."
Lincoln then talked about how he had been so impressed with the acting talents of Joey Silvera that he sent the young star to New York to gain experience on Broadway and in mainstream movies—and was shocked to find out that instead, Silvera had become one of the most sought-after actors in adult.
But, he stated, "New York people and the California people were the same. They were all incredible human beings. They were helpful, they helped each other, they did things for each other; we got high together, we had sex together. It was just unbelievable."
That last word seemed to supply a segue to a story he related about sharing a gram of hashish with Sharon Mitchell in the '70s, when the young starlet bent over and asked that Lincoln insert her half into her butthole. Lincoln did so, using his middle finger. But the psychedelic melted and covered his fingertip, and as he was attempting to re-insert the gummy substance, his then-girlfriend Tiffany Clark opened the door to their apartment, allowing Lincoln's nosy, disapproving neighbor a full view of what many would consider a bizarre sight: Sharon Mitchell, her ass in the air, with Lincoln thrusting and withdrawing his finger from the orifice, trying to dislodge the hashish.
"She [the neighbor] moved out the next day," he concluded.
Some other attendees who didn't speak from the dias nevertheless were willing to share their thoughts.
"I feel very bad that I didn't get to speak for Freddie, but Freddie already knows how much I love him and what he meant to me," said Veronica Hart, "and I just want it known that Freddie saved Mitchie's [Sharon Mitchell's] life so often and Patti and Angelica saved his life so many times. I love him and I'll miss him."
"I remember my sons taking baths with Angelica, and cleaning diapers together with Fred; we spent many years doing that," said director Paul Norman, who at the time was married to Tori Welles. "But I remember the first time I met Freddie. It was at Catalina, and I was cutting Female Aggressors and he came in and I was like, 'Whoa, here is the master,' and we became friends ever since. I hired him for Edward Penishands 3, as the 'Old Penishands,' and not only did he act in it, I think he took over the director's role as well."
"I was very saddened to hear that Freddie had died because I worked with him up in San Francisco back in 1985," said Nina Hartley. "He played my pimp. I loved him because he was 'old school' but friendly, nice, hippie guy, liked sex, liked the ladies, and it's not always true that directors these days like women and you could always tell that Freddie loved women. And he was a dedicated dad, which is always nice to see in a man. And he had some stories about the days in New York! What's sad about Freddie going, and before him Ron Sullivan, is that that generation of pioneers is leaving us, and there's so little institutional memory about the 'old days' that in a few years, I'll be a dinosaur and people won't understand anything about, you know, videocassettes. But Freddie's gone, another one's gone, and we're all getting older."
Besides those mentioned above, others who attended the gathering included current and former actresses Kendall Karson, Alexandra Silk (who with her partner Luc Wylder put together a slideshow presentation), Kylie Ireland (with Andy Appleton), Misty Rain and husband Chad, scripter Raven Touchstone, Mara Epstein, Wendy Nitz, directors Greg Dark, Kelly Holland, David Lord, Roy Karch and Nic Cramer, studio heads Steve Hirsch, Steve Orenstein and Rob Spallone, and current and former actors Blake Palmer, Tony Tedeschi, Nick East, Guy DeSilva, Mark Davis, Valentino, Herschel Savage, Sean Michaels, Kyle Stone and Scott Schwartz.
Pictured: Angelica Piantadosi and Patti Rhodes