After completing your bachelors and masters degree from an esteemed arts school what do you do? For Eon McKai the answer was clear -- make porn. However, it was obvious from "Art School Sluts," McKai's first film, released through VCA, that he had not set out to make formulaic, visually subdued adult movies. With his unique aesthetic style & homages to independent film makers, McKai ventured to create hardcore porn for the rest of us. The tattooed, the jaded intellects who desire more, the film geeks and those who just bore of basic whack material.
Recently, omniphiliac was able to catch up with Eon McKai to discuss his newest creation "On My Dirty Knees," along with his past works, his experience as the head of Vivid-Alt & the newest creations that he's currently concocting.
Explain to us the concept behind On My Dirty Knees (OMDK)?
I'm fascinated with the world that young women have access to. You know girls just make their way through life with a much different set of tools. I'm always much more interested in the women’s world and the ins and outs of what motivates a woman to choose the path she takes.
Your prior movies featured a collection of songs from Gravy Train, Matmos and other fairly well known bands, what led you to deciding to have the band Heshen create an original score for OMDK?
I think having one artist do the score helps keep the tone of the movie consistent.
The editing and dialogue in OMDK seemed to be inspired by film makers like Harmony Korine (Director of Gummo). Who are some other influences of yours?
Jon Jost, his early stuff for sure. Richard Linklaters' stuff like Slacker also.
Some of the male talent in OMDK were pretty awkward in the dialogue scenes, how intentional was that?
Totally. It was most definitely a choice, not something that happened by some sublime luck.
It takes a different breed to be male talent.
Like many of your other titles, On My Dirty Knees is very visually stylized. How is OMDK visually different from your other work?
Well this one we broke away from using a pro camera and we started using this super small camera. This helps when we want to shoot sex in the Los Angeles River or even the stuff we did at the opening where the talent were over the freeway.
On My Dirty Knees stars Andy San Dimas and Vin Vericose who are a couple in real life. How is it working with couples in porn?
Well couples are funny, they complain about funny stuff when they are doing it. I have been doing this for about 5 years now and I don't really sell movies to hardcore porn fans. I'm selling to an audience that identifies with the characters. So I think couples, like Andy and Vin, help bring something innocent and real to the movie.
How did you get your start in film?
I went to film school at Cal Arts. I got a Masters degree there, believe it or not.
How did you come about heading Vivid Alt?
Well, Steven Hirsch [head of Vivid] just kept calling me and in one of the many meetings we had about me doing some movies for Vivid I steered things into me heading up an imprint. Crazy, right? I thought Vivid would be lame and did not take it serious at first. But the more I spent time and looked into Vivid I saw an opportunity to do something no one has ever done in this biz.
Are you given total artistic freedom to do what you want from Vivid or do you have to jump through hurdles to be able to do projects your way?
I run Vivid Alt so I green light whatever I see fit. I think that shows in the work we put out. I'm trusted and I also garnered the right for me to hire who I want in my contract. Most of the movies are made for the same budget as well. So it's not like one director gets more than another. I like it like that.
Do you have a "coming out" story behind your parents finding out you direct adult movies?
Yeah I do, it was when I got this big write up in the Los Angeles Times Magazine
one Sunday and my parents called and asked If I knew this guy. At that time they were into it and it was exciting. But recently, I have lost the support and respect of my family. I'm pretty busted up about it most days. Porn does seem to be taking some things from me now and then...Porn.
What is your response to those who claim that the aesthetics of your films doesn't work for porn?
Well, it doesn't work for the porn they're thinking of. Alt porn has it's own audience and most of the time a much different use. It's nice that people notice that what we do is different and it's nice to get whatever respect we can from the mainstream of the adult business. But at the end of the day about the only thing we share is how our product is distributed.
Alt porn has it's own audience and most of the time a much different use.
In what ways are you supported or not supported by the mainstream porn community?
Hmm, well it seems like more and more the mainstream porn world is getting used to us. But you have to understand that pornographers and even webmasters are always copying what appears to be doing well. But alt porn copies never do well or come even close to getting any traction in the market. So I think most of the pain about alt porn at the moment is... it has a pretty hard core copy protection. You really have to be it to make it, if you will...
What are your thoughts on conventional mainstream porn?
Well there is a lot of good I think, good stuff to jack off to. Stuff that puts out a positive image for the biz over all. So yeah, it's good...I guess.
Which of your titles are you most proud of and why?
Hmm, The Doll Underground and Girls Lie I think. Sometimes you just channel the right spirits.
Can you talk more about your difficulty finding decent male talent in alt-porn?
Hahahaha, hmm, NO! It takes a different breed to be male talent and so I have some I like and now we are into the post alt wave of talent and we have cats like Vin Vericose on the rise. I'll use Daniel pretty much all of the time. Also I know for myself I will throw in a boyfriend or two now and then to keep the cast grounded in reality.
In your youtube video from AVN 2009 you tell LITHIUM_PICNIC and Lalo "all I know is that all the hipster girls I get with, they all want the rape."
For funsies, can you elaborate on that statement?
I don't really sell movies to hardcore porn fans. I'm selling to an audience that identifies with the characters.
Well I don't believe 99% of the hard sex I see in porn or in real life. Why can't everyone just be themselves? Why create pressure out of something?
How annoyed are you by "gonzo" porn?
I love gonzo. I jerk off to it all the time.
You seemed to have a lot of fun with the idea of The Doll Underground, are you planning on doing more work with that concept?
Yes, as we go more web in the future Doll will be episodic and I have lots of fun stuff I want to do with it.
Tell us about your succulents in your yard.
Well I want all cyber looking plants in my yard and I want them to use almost no water.
Can you tell us about any future projects that you may be planning out right now?
I re-did kinda Art School Sluts, it's called Art School Girls Are Easy
Do you have any advice for members and models of Deviant Nation who are considering getting into hardcore alt-porn?
You're going to be good looking for a long time and hardcore alt-porn will always be here.
For more information on On My Dirty Knees, click HERE.
You can also watch the trailer for On My Dirty Knees HERE.