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Read Bjork's2001 interview with Juergen Teller from the index archives.

Kathleen Hanna discusses writing and making music in this interview from 2000 with Laurie Weeks.

Isabella Rossellini spoke with Peter Halley in this 1999 interview.

Check out our interview with Crispin Glover by Richard Kern from 2000.
Alexander McQueen's 2003 interview with Bjork.

Shane, 1999


To call Shane a pornographer sounds harsh, but that's what she is, and she's the best in the business. She's able to transform a dead medium (whack-off material normally suited for Charlie Raincoat and Johnny Frathouse), into something original and friendly. Shane's not the first woman to get behind the smut cam and press REC but she's completely in her own land as far as style and content go. With a camera guy recording the proceedings, what you see is super adorable Shane saying howdy, mugging sweetly for the audience, hanging out with friends (a bunch of porn stars) and a carefully selected fan of the month, brushing her teeth, jumping on a trampoline, washing dishes, giggling madly, loading up a rented motor home for a snowboarding trip to the mountains. Suddenly someone lifts up his or her shirt and skirt and all hell breaks loose — as the girls muff dive one another, the woodsmen pull out their tools and belly up to the melee. Shane's World (now in its 15th installment in only two years) bears some resemblance to material on MTV except none of it's boring, the bodies are over-the-top radical — eventually everyone's buck naked, thank god — and they plow the shit out of each other, professional fuckmachines that they are. Most of Shane's female contemporaries who direct Adult video either rip her off in some way (she could care less) or strain to deliver syrupy messages about male/female passion via conventional drama and acting (a strategy that has its own perverse charm, but in the end is truly demented). Her videos are spontaneous and cranky. Her tribe eats big group meals together, tell stories, goof around, and get playful with sex. The vibe is honest and strangely disarming. They wake up in the morning, groggy, and hide under the covers.

BENJAMIN: Have you ever propositioned a stranger and then fucked them?
SHANE: Oh god, yes. I was pretty famous for that. I love doing that. That's my favorite thing — to shock somebody. Like I shock them when I say it, but I really shock them when they take me up on it and I really do it.

BENJAMIN: For instance ...
SHANE: Well, my friend Yvonne and I would go out tramping. We'd go to a bar, you know, start schmoozing with the guys. And you know, there's always a handful of cocky guys that think they're cute and have something to offer and whatever and there's the poor little innocent guy that's nice enough to buy you a drink and act like a gentleman, and that's usually the one we'd pick.

BENJAMIN: Always root for the underdog.
SHANE: And of course we'd have to do it in front of the other guys since there was a lesson to be learned.

BENJAMIN: [big laugh]
SHANE: And then we'd spoil the guy for a night, and hopefully make his week.

BENJAMIN: Wow, so you were like sex saints, improving the world around you?
SHANE: Yeah, it was kind of fun, plus we had a good time while we were doing it.

BENJAMIN: Now, your husband is in a band called Orgy.
SHANE: Right, I know ...

BENJAMIN: Isn't there an airport story about him coming back from tour?
SHANE: That would be the time he met Yvonne. I've been married for a year now, but before my husband, Yvonne's the person I had sex with the most. And when I first met him, I talked about her all the time, but they'd never met. And then I went to New Zealand and he went to Spain. He was gone for three weeks, I was gone for two. And I missed him so bad. I couldn't wait for him to come home because I also couldn't wait for them to meet. So I took her to the airport with me to pick him up. We had a Bronco at the time, and we taped up condoms everywhere, put blankets and pillows down in the back, folded down the seat, had an ice bucket with Coronas, sliced-up limes, Captain Martins and Coke ...
BENJAMIN: A party at the aeropuerto!
SHANE: Exactly. We got there like an hour early to find the perfect parking spot. We found this one in the corner that kind of looked out at people. Finally, we just took him back there and practically raped him after the 18 hours of straight travel he had. [laughs] But that was fun. That was the first time they met. We all had a good time.

BENJAMIN: I know you're not in your movies any more, but who did you most like to fuck when you were in them?
SHANE: Yvonne.

BENJAMIN: Why do you like to fuck Yvonne so much?
SHANE: Yvonne's been in every movie with me up until Volume 9 I think 'cause she quit the business, but she was even in the Seymore Butts movies with me. She's from London and I met her when she first came over here on a six-month visa and I wouldn't let her go home. Because I just started a bachelor party company and she was basically my partner. We just went out and did bachelor parties all the time and we had so much fun. Oh my god, way too much fun. I call it the good old days. [giggles]

BENJAMIN: Who was your favorite male to fuck before you got married?
SHANE: Somebody from the industry?

SHANE: Well, if I had to pick someone from the industry to fuck, which I really don't like to do — to call some guy up and book him for a day to come over and have sex with me so I can pay him, you know what I mean?

BENJAMIN: Yes, I do. I hate when beautiful girls call me up and ask me to fuck them for $500. It takes all the fun out of it.
SHANE: Exactly, it takes all the fun out of it. But I totally get along with T.T. Boy [giggles] in a really smart-ass kind of way. So I like to fuck him because we always, I don't know, it's like a grudge fuck, I guess.

BENJAMIN: Yeah, grudge fucks can be awesome and strange.
SHANE: Yeah. It's kind of fun. It's entertaining. He's entertaining because he has such an ego. I don't know, I try to make him feel as small as possible. It's kind of fun [giggles] but he likes it ...

BENJAMIN: So you're really close buds?
SHANE: That's the whole thing, we just give each other shit. Like in the pool party, the last time I did a scene with him, for Seymore, we were just basically fucking because we were talking and I told him I could make him cum way before he'd ever make me cum. And so we had to prove the point of who was better. He had to wear a condom, of course, and I knew when he came but he tried to hide it. [giggles] He tried to keep going. I was the victorious one.

BENJAMIN: Do you ever think of doing straight movies?
SHANE: No, never. I've been offered, but no, I'm not an actress. I don't act. I tried it once, for one day. I left in half a day. And I did that movie for fuckin' Vivid. I did one scene. I hated it!

BENJAMIN: The whole way they do it ...
SHANE: It's not me.

BENJAMIN: So your films are almost like documentaries, right?
SHANE: They're kind of like a spinoff off of MTV's Real World — except with hard-core sex. You know, when I was working for Seymour, I only did it for fun. I never wanted to get into the industry. That was never my ambition, dream or thought. But I'm not an uptight person. I did it because I was really having fun with it. And it snowballed and all of a sudden I had all these fans, and I was like, "Oh my god!"

BENJAMIN: So documentary is more the style in which you do these things. They're almost like home movies.
SHANE: It seemed that what people liked the most was that I always was just myself. They didn't see me acting out some character. They only saw me as myself. So then I wanted to do my own films where everyone just comes and it's a big party, and we have fun, and everyone's themselves. I've been around long enough to know that once you get all these people together, it's inevitable that you begin to...

BENJAMIN: It's going to happen.
SHANE: The sex is going to break out. It's going to happen. They're sexual people. That's why they're in the industry. And I'll just shoot them being themselves. We go out on a trip, you know, and everyone's like, "Who am I working with? What am I doing? What are we supposed to do?" Everyone's a little lost because they're so not used to that. They're used to showing up, knowing who they work with, doing their set scene, doing their dialogue, getting up, getting their check and going home.

BENJAMIN: With Shane's World it's completely unscripted.
SHANE: Totally. I'm like, "You're going to go on a trip for three days, we're going to go into Big Bear, party, have a great time, work with whoever you want, whenever you want, wherever you want. I don't care. Just make sure the camera is there and you get it." They're like, "Really?" I'm like, "Yeah."

BENJAMIN: So you're not even giving directions — other than to set it into motion at the beginning?
SHANE: People say, "How do you like directing?" And I say, "I don't direct anything, I'm a party-thrower. I don't direct. But I have shot every single one and edited all my movies. I just now used a new cameraman on the one we just shot, the fifteenth one. He shot most of it, and I shot a little bit.

BENJAMIN: Do you start really early?
SHANE: I don't make anyone get up early. Fuck that! Usually we'll get the camera guy, and he'll wake people up with the camera, and they scream at him, go after him ...

BENJAMIN: Talk about "Shane's Helpful Hints."
SHANE: It's like a little segment we put in every video, like how to eat pussy, how to take care of your pubic hair, how to give a blowjob while driving in a car, how to begin with anal sex, experimenting in bondage.

BENJAMIN: Taking the world by the hand. Showing us the way.
SHANE: Yeah, we try new products when they come out. We'll test it out and give it our rating. We tried the female condom. Actually, T.T. Boy tried it and he said it was like fucking a garbage bag. [giggles]

BENJAMIN: What do you think about being on the receiving end of pain?
SHANE: I did a couple bondage movies. I told Bruce Seven I was a bad girl and I needed to be spanked. I never tried bondage and I heard he was a pro and I wanted to give it a shot 'cause I don't get it. [giggles] I just don't get why someone would like to be beat. But, I got it. I was supposed to do one scene but I stayed there all day and made two and a half movies in one day, I had so much fun.

BENJAMIN: It was rad, wasn't it?
SHANE: Oh my god, it was really really rad. I haven't done it again since but I totally got into it.

BENJAMIN: You can see the expression on a sub's face, they translate the pain into a complex thing. It's all private and super out there.
SHANE: I was in La-La Land. When I watched the tape my whole breathing changed. I passed out a few times. Just 'cause my adrenaline was going so much, like every emotion in your body is running rampant at one time. It's really really weird.

BENJAMIN: Would you fuck our Commander in Chief, Mr. C?
SHANE: No. The only man other than my husband that I'd fuck, and I tell him this all the time, is Trent Reznor. So, no, I wouldn't fuck Bill. I might give him a blowjob, though. You know, just for the hell of it. A good ball licking. He could use it.

BENJAMIN: How about Hillary?
SHANE: Uhmm ... no. I'm into older women, but Hillary doesn't exactly do it for me. No, I don't really know her personality, but it doesn't seem like she really has much of one, so I'd have to say no.

BENJAMIN: The obvious third, Chelsea?
SHANE: Oh god, wouldn't touch it. First of all, she's too young, and second, I have a sister named Chelsea. [giggles] No, definitely no.

BENJAMIN: If you could get romantic with any animal, what would you choose?
SHANE: Oh god, well, I don't think I'd really be able to have sex with an animal just because of the guilt. It wouldn't feel right to me. I'm a real animal freak. It would be like child molesting.

BENJAMIN: Wow, rad parallel. So let me rephrase that. What animal do you adore so much that you'd consider messing with but wouldn't because you had too much respect for it?
SHANE: Well, if I was going to have sex with anything, of course I'd have to try something weird. Like, I saw a movie with a donkey [giggles]. They actually had the donkey trained. I could not believe it. The donkey was like, getting up. I don't know. That seems really fucking strange to me. Not that I'd ever do it, but if I were to do something like that I'd probably try the donkey.

BENJAMIN: Because of the big ears.
SHANE: It may not have even been a donkey. It was like some small horse. It could've been a Shetland Pony. I halfway watched it and halfway couldn't.

BENJAMIN: What do you think of midgets and like, disfigured people ...
SHANE: Like the "Kinkorama" stuff?

BENJAMIN: That doesn't come in your radar at all, does it?
SHANE: It doesn't really work for me, although I'm going to be tapping into that a little bit with the new one I'm coming out with.

BENJAMIN: Really. Shane's new one. Will it have fetish stuff, things like that?
SHANE: Yeah, totally. But I want to push it past just being fetish. I'm going to be doing three series made up of fetish videos, because I want to have some fun with it.

BENJAMIN: Just bring it all into Shane's World.
SHANE: Okay, I'll give you the title. You ready?

BENJAMIN: Go ahead.
SHANE: Shane's Underworld.

BENJAMIN: Very nice.
SHANE: I want to put some
really trippy people in them. I want to try to get celebrities, if possible, which hopefully I can get.
BENJAMIN: Like porn celebrities or ...
SHANE: No, regular celebrities.

BENJAMIN: Like David Hasselhof? People like that?
SHANE: Well, I don't think I'll be getting David Hasselhof ...

BENJAMIN: Johnny Carson? He's not doing anything.
SHANE: I'm sure I can get a few people from the music industry, because my husband knows a lot of people.

BENJAMIN: Like who?
SHANE: Well, he was Tommy's best man.

SHANE: But I don't think Tommy would be wanting to do something like that right now.

BENJAMIN: Can you describe an immoral thought that circulates in your head?
SHANE: Immoral? Inflicting pain upon people. It enters my head daily.

SHANE: Almost. [giggles] I just want to have people beat up. I know I can't do it, but ...

BENJAMIN: People you work with, difficulties in the business?
SHANE: Yeah, it's all work related.

BENJAMIN: What percentage of adult performers do you think were molested as children?
SHANE: I would say, majority of. Definitely over half. But I hate hate hate when people write that. The thing that people forget about is that we are in a sex-related industry, and we are very, very open people. The people who work in offices and have secretaries or file clerks or whatever, they don't talk openly about any of that, but I guarantee you if you were to pass a piece a paper around and everyone had to write an honest answer and tell the truth, you would find the same statistics. Maybe they're a little bit higher in this industry, yes, but I don't think there's that much of a difference.

SHANE: The majority of all women — period — have been raped or molested at one point in their life. I have plenty of girl friends that aren't in this industry that have had the same experiences as people I work with. And they're people who sell insurance or work at banks, you know what I mean?
So I hate when people talk about that. Even Howard Stern. When I did his show he brought that up, and yeah, it's true, but that's the truth anywhere you go. But they like to point the finger at us.

BENJAMIN: What did you think of Boogie Nights?
SHANE: The first time I saw it, I didn't like it too much. I think I took it too personally.

BENJAMIN: Oh, really?
SHANE: Yeah. Even though I realized it was supposed to come out of the '70s, and lord knows, I certainly wouldn't know what the porn industry was like then! [laughs] But I didn't like the way they made us seem — how we were all involved in drugs and whatever. But after I saw it a second time, when I put away my personal opinions, it was a pretty good movie. It was funny. I really did not like it the first time I saw it, though.

BENJAMIN: Is Shane your real name?
SHANE: My mom was going to name me Shane if I was a boy, Shannon if I was a girl. So Shannon's my real name. But I grew up with the name Shane because I was always a tomboy. And my sister grew up calling me Shane 'cause I didn't want to be a girl. I wanted to be a boy.

BENJAMIN: What little things do you hate about sex? The oddities. The little particular moments. We know what's great about sex, but what's tricky?
SHANE: If I drink too much it's really hard for me to cum. That's not a small thing though, that's a big thing. I guess some girls I know don't like it when they get air in their pussy and it comes out — you know what I mean? — like it makes a sound. I love that. [laughter] There's really not a whole lot about sex that bothers me. Except for when I can't cum.

© index magazinegelatin1
Shane by Catherine Opie, 1999
© index magazinegelatin1
Shane by Catherine Opie, 1999

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