Kiss Your Mother With That Mouth? Part II
Part II: Joanna Angel Jewcy: Your mom is concerned about your financials. Joanna Angel: How many other twenty-five year olds do you know that are buying real estate and investing? I live on both sides of the country, and that’s … Read More
Part II: Joanna Angel
Jewcy: Your mom is concerned about your financials.
Joanna Angel: How many other twenty-five year olds do you know that are buying real estate and investing? I live on both sides of the country, and that’s expensive. You tend to spend a lot when you’re going coast to coast. When you’re in this business, you also have to look like a million dollars all the time and that isn’t cheap.
Jewcy: Did you go to public school?
Joanna Angel: My parents were a little nutty. They kept taking me in and out of Hebrew school and public school.
Jewcy: We were talking about the old clichés of adult stars and how they come from broken homes. But aside from having a stable high school environment, your upbringing sounds very different. It sounds nurturing.
Joanna Angel: There are a lot of people in porn. There are a lot of functional people in porn.
Joanna Angel: [Laughs] I was doing tashlich on Yom Kippur and I raised my hand to throw bread into the water. And she was like, Oh my God. What is that? I was going to tell her but I didn’t want her to be upset.
Jewcy: Your first tattoo was on your shoulder.
Joanna Angel: Yeah, I actually have a lot of them now that she doesn’t know about. She knows about some of them but I forget which are the ones she knows about and the ones she doesn’t, so I try to keep track for when I have to cover up when I go home. Sometimes, though, I make mistakes.
Jewcy: Did you secretly desire to be a porn star in high school, or as a teen?
Joanna Angel: No, never. It never crossed my mind until my roommate in college asked me if I wanted to start a porn website with him. I knew nothing about porn initially. I grew up in the punk and hardcore scene—we were focused on making the world better, not sex. I didn’t lose my virginity until I was eighteen.
When my roommate did ask me about the website, I thought I was going to help run it or just write on it. It was exciting. It sounded like fun. I remember getting the website together and asking girls to model and I started to feel really hypocritical not doing it myself.
Then we took the photos of me and I didn’t think they were going to come out well and I remember looking at the photos and thinking, “Wow, I look kinda hot.” Originally, I thought I was a crusty vegan girl with short hair and bad skin but it came out kinda hot and it made me feel great.
Jewcy: Why did you start stripping?
Joanna Angel: I was sick of living in Jersey. I wanted to move and take it to the next level. I was in a crunch for money because of the website and I didn’t want to wait tables. And after I started the website, I saw a new side of myself and I didn’t mind going with it.
Jewcy: Have you ever had any feelings of guilt?
Joanna Angel: I don’t like pissing off my mom. I used to like it when I was little. And the only time I really thought that if my mom could see me, she would cry—and this is going to sound really fucked up—is when I did my first porno with a black guy. I was thinking, this right here is my mother’s worst nightmare. This is not what a nice Jewish mom wants her daughter to do.
And I feel bad when she sees some stuff. I remember when she borrowed my car and she opened the trunk and I had some DVDs in there, and she was like, “Oh my God. There are pictures of Joanna having sexual intercourse in the trunk of the car!” But I don’t feel guilty because I think I’m doing something wrong. I just don’t want her being upset.
Jewcy: Your mom thinks you want to get married eventually.
Joanna Angel: My mom’s been talking to me about it since I’ve been fifteen. And I do want to eventually get married. Yeah, why not?
Jewcy: Where do you want to be in ten years?
Joanna Angel: I would like to direct more and act less. I don’t think I’m that good at performing. But I do enjoy it. I wish I was better at it. I get nominated generally for Best Directing and Best Acting but other girls in my movies get nominated for Best Three-way or Best Oral.
Jewcy: Does it matter to you that your family can’t respect your profession?
Joanna Angel: I was never looking for validation from my family. It’s important that they’re in my life but I don’t need my dad to pat me on my back—I just want to see them and have them love me. It’s huge to me that my mom is still willing to embrace me and accept me. I think I took my mom for granted when I was growing up but not anymore.
Jewcy: How do you respond to your mom’s criticism that men take advantage of women in this industry?
Joanna Angel: Men take advantage of women in every industry. We live in a patriarchy. But that being said, when you want to do porn, you go to an agent and they ask you what you will do and what you won’t do—will you do girls? Will you do boys and girls? It’s not like that in the real world. They don’t give you options like that.
Jewcy: Does your partner in Burning Angel appear in any of the films?
Joanna Angel: No. He actually tried to talk me out of doing the movies. He tries to tell my mom that but she doesn’t believe him. It was just something I really wanted to do.
Jewcy: Do you still have a passion for having intercourse on film for public consumption?
Joanna Angel: Um, yeah. Well, as times goes on, I don’t think I’ll be doing more Burning Angel movies because it’s my own company so it may look strange that I’m promoting myself. But I am doing like six Hustler movies a year. I think the stage I’m at is kind of nice because I look forward to doing them now as opposed to tiring of them. There are some girls in the industry that work every day. You can’t enjoy that. But nobody enjoys what they do every day.
Jewcy: Do you still feel connected to your tradition considering your line of work?
Joanna Angel: I go home for the holidays. It’s a time to see my family and it’s a purely traditional thing for me. It’s not spiritual. And you know, I think I would feel uncomfortable marrying someone who wasn’t Jewish. I couldn’t live in a house with a Christmas tree—that would make me uncomfortable.