Kelly Madison is talking to me from Orange County, where for the past decade she and her husband, Ryan Madison, perform in and populate the sites Kelly Madison, Pornfidelity, and Teenfidelity. Kelly is ten years older than her husband, and is like a blonde, brassy, big-boobed, and boisterous billboard for Orange County living. But there’s a secret.
“We pretend we’re not California workaholics,” she says, “but we are.”
Sure every vacation in Cabo or Europe is a tax writeoff (“we make sure we do some shooting everywhere,” Kelly says) but the pair have built a humming empire behind the Orange Curtain that reflects their own personalities as much as it does its distance from Porn Valley.
Kelly’s style is, she admits, “hokey.” The pair just filmed the 500th scene for Pornfidelity, but every scene in the Madisons’ archive has a sense of sunwashed and ridiculous California Swinger fun, as the pair cruise the Petco parking lot (“Petco: Where the Sluts Go,” Kelly says) for paid talent from L.A., down for the day posing as Huntington Beach swingerbait.
Kelly met Ryan when the latter was designing flyers for Ralph’s Supermarkets and she was a Sales VP. She felt she was robbing the cradle.
“He was 22,” she says. “Three beers. That about did it. I was in love.”
This was in 1999. Today their business employs seven full-time staff, many of whom have been with the Madisons for five years or more. “We all sort of ended up together,” Kelly says, “and there’s no politics or drama.” There are satellite employees working in Texas, Boston, and Florida on site updates and merchant accounts and—this is important—the couple lives in one house and shoots in another. The clothed part of their job finds Ryan dealing with much of the website backend, cameras, and lighting, and Kelly taking care of bookings, promotion, and costumes.
“We’ve got one place in Seal Beach and one place in Huntington Beach,” Kelly says. “I work at home a lot and Ryan works at the office. Which is good because one of us would be in jail and the other would be dead if we didn’t do it that way.”
On camera, the Madisons live within the standard porn double-standard (which, when you think about it, isn’t a double standard): Kelly fucks Ryan and other women; Ryan fucks Kelly and other women. And no one fucks other dudes. I ask Kelly about jealousy.
“Jealousy happens,” she says. “But if I were a normal girl with normal jealousies, being in a business like this one with your husband is a good litmus test for yourself. ‘Am I jealous for the right reasons?’ Ryan is good at quelling those issues. I’m also fond of remembering that ‘these are thoughts and these are feelings.'”
What does that mean?
“That you don’t have to be in porn to be jealous, jealousy is natural, and you work through it like everything else.”
Ryan Madison recently had an affair.
“Ryan got really bored,” Kelly admits, “and I could tell he was itchy.”
The affair was with the feature porn format—on DVD, no less. Titled “Get My Belt,” Ryan stars as an S & M desperado, hooking up violently with the likes of Chanel Preston, Brooklyn Lee, and Chastity Lynn before freed sex slave Skin Diamond delivers his comeuppance.
With 500 scenes of a certain porny wackiness under their belts, Kelly says, “Ryan felt like his creativity was being stifled.”
“We tend to shoot guerilla style around the neighborhood or in the house,” Kelly says. “We’ll get a Cease And Desist order now and then, but we don’t get in anyone’s way. We’ll say we’re doing a student film. We don’t flaunt what we’re doing. But with a feature like ‘Get My Belt,’ that was a lot bigger. We had to actually go to Home Depot and get a bunch of crappy fencewood.”
And a horse.
“Yes, and a horse. We shot those scenes a few minutes from where we live.”
“Get My Belt” is a great movie for a number of reasons. Not only does Chanel Preston get done like a Mexican film star in a Riverside, CA mission, but the movie has a protagonist and an antagonist. There’s actually good and evil involved. Not only that, but ‘Get My Belt’ is a 180 degree departure from what the Madisons usually shoot.
“I’m not going to be in this one,” Kelly told Ryan. “You’ve got belts and ropes and shit. I still have to stay true to this persona I created.”
And it’s true. There was no place in ‘Get My Belt’ for the Exuberant Blonde with a Heart of Gold.
“But he needed to get that out of his system and put it to bed for a while,” Kelly says. “So now we’re back to the zany stuff.”
Read my review of “Get My Belt” here
The Madisons have a good relationship with all the Porn Valley and OC porn talent agencies, and tout Orange County as a welcome change of pace. [During non-moratorium times] they usually work a few days ahead of time, waiting a day longer than Valley-based companies for talent booking and processing. “Travel can be a drag,” but once the talent gets there, Kelly says, “we treat them like gold.”
The Madisons roughly break up their duties, Kelly says, but both are “on call 24/7.” She says that, if they knew what a state the business would be in by 2013, they would have worked their butts off in the early, more lucrative years, when it was easier to make money. When I ask what she thinks they’ll be doing in 5-10 years, however, Kelly isn’t like a lot of people who throw up their hands and say “Who knows?”
“Five years from now I want us to be not handling everything ourselves,” Madison says. “Ryan will handle (affiliate tracking software) NATS and theft, but that’s it. Hopefully we can go back to focusing on the production and creativity.
“Gross as it sounds,” Kelly says, “we’re a Mom And Pop porn operation.”
Previously on Porn Valley Observed: Kelly Madison, Have Wristband, Will Travel; Earthquake rocks “Couples’ Porn Valley”; When “South of the Border” refers to both Mexico and Remy La Croix’s anus; “Get My Belt” review
See also: Kelly Madison