Sasha Grey: “I’d Accomplished All Of My Goals”

The former porn star talks new horizons, musical endeavours and owning her past.

It’s the era of the slashie.  Pop culture figures no longer specialise in just one thing. California’s Sasha Grey, AKA Marina Hantzis, may have found fame in the noughties’ world of adult entertainment (okay, as a porn star), but today she’s a model/actor/author/musician/producer and DJ. In 2013 Hantzis published The Juliette Society, an edgy alternative to EL James’ vanilla BDSM tome Fifty Shades Of Grey. Come December, the 26-year-old will hit Australia for her inaugural DJ tour here. And, in contrast to those ‘celebrity’ DJs, she’s playing credible underground venues.

Hailing from a broken home in blue-collar Sacramento, Hantzis initially worked as a bus-girl. But, being canny, pragmatic and almost defiantly cultured and intellectual, the teenager hatched an escape plan. A determined Hantzis headed to San Fernando Valley, Cali’s porn epicentre – and hustled. This original wrecking ball sensation made hardcore porn even more hardcore with her method acting. As such, Hantzis won 2008′s AVN (Adult Video News) “Female Performer Of The Year” Award.

Along the way, Hantzis crossed paths with controversial fashion photographer Terry Richardson – big on retro porn imagery – and she appears in a reprint of his coffee table book Terryworld. Today Hantzis is unsure what to make of ongoing allegations that Richardson sexually exploits young female models. “Years ago, when I was 18, I contacted him through his website,” Hantzis recalls candidly. “I had one of his assistants write me back and they said, ‘We’re working in LA, do you wanna shoot?’ He was super-chill – he’s very quiet, very reserved. That was the first time I shot with him, when I was 18 – and I’ve gone on to shoot with him four or five times since then. He’s very cool. [But] I’ve thought about these things myself. I guess it’s also true that everybody can see a different side of somebody, but all of my experiences have been nothing but positive.”

[ click to continue reading at ]