Rocket Man

How one enterprising Johnson Space Center physicist followed his dream to Hollywood and porn stardom

The problems start when Demi Marx breaks a nail.

She's pulling a pink fishnet blouse over her bare breasts when the material snags a French tip and the sucker drops to the wood floor with a soft plunk. Marx, an attractive young woman with a slight overbite and brown hair that hangs just above her shoulders, looks for the nail in despair. Worried about how her asymmetrical digits will look while she applies herself to getting the talent off, she figures she better use her other hand on him. Coiling her fingers, she pumps her good hand in the air a few times just to make sure.

Through the door behind her, production assistant Ivan E. Rection carries a cooler stuffed with bottled water, Wheat Thins, Pringles and Fleet Ready-to-Use Enemas. Lube and baby wipes round out the essentials for today's shoot, Meat Pushin' in the Seat Cushion 2.

Staying well lubed between takes is a must.
Craig Malisow
Staying well lubed between takes is a must.
Styles tries to keep more than a leg up on the 
Craig Malisow
Styles tries to keep more than a leg up on the competition.

Her co-star today is Scott Styles, who arrives while Marx and the crew head to the backyard. He has just made the 30-mile trek up from Redondo Beach, where he shares a two-story stucco home with his wife and fellow porn star, Kim Chambers.

Today's shoot doesn't require any special clothing, so Styles arrives comfortably clad in a white pullover, black shorts and sandals. He's handsome, with a reassuring smile, although he's vague about his age, which the Internet Movie Database lists as 35.

Well tanned and well built, with long black hair combed behind his ears, he chews gum and waits patiently inside the house as Marx strips off her blouse and shorts.

Styles arrived late enough to miss the commotion that got the crew off to a late start and set the tone for the rest of the day.

They're an hour behind schedule, mostly because the door to the one-story San Fernando Valley home was locked when everyone arrived. D.J., the still photographer, had to call the location company to track down the woman of the house, who eventually rolled up, unlocked the door, told everyone the dogs were harmless and promptly disappeared. No one seemed to know who she was, thereby preserving the mystery of the homeowners. The only thing one could say about them was that they were dog people and didn't mind strangers taping heated bouts of anal penetration on their conjugal bed.

Once inside, D.J. sits on a couch overlooking a rug that boasts the world's biggest dog-hair collection. He and Marx complain about the rank odor in the still, stuffy air. The hair on the rug looks like it belongs to the red chow, a Cujo-in-training lurking in the rear hallway. The other dog, a mutt with that extra-sweet disposition reserved for only the dimmest animals, just walks around, giddily trying to sniff everyone. Director Tom Byron, with shades, earring and goatee, prefers to be away from the beasts altogether, smoking at a table on the patio. He's dressed for colder weather, wearing a heavy navy blue sweatsuit whose back is embroidered with quotes from Muhammad Ali.

Now, Styles just relaxes as Byron, D.J. and Ivan toil in the backyard, shooting Marx as she poses pseudo-seductively for the video's box cover. Her six-inch black heels digging into the earth, she not only looks like she's shrinking, she has trouble maintaining balance.

"Fuckin' porn, man. I should've stayed in school," she says with a laugh. She's kidding, because she did stay in school; she earned a degree from an online fashion design school. She says she's just working in the porn industry until she earns enough money to start her own business.

Styles has never before met Marx, who celebrated her 20th birthday the day before, but 15 minutes after they shake hands his tongue is between her legs.

They're in the owners' ten-by-ten bedroom, a veritable furnace even with the curtains drawn against the blaring SoCal sun. Byron removes the jacket of his heavy sweatsuit. Out of respect, D.J. and Ivan have turned framed photographs of the owners' toddler daughter away from Byron's camera. Ivan stands outside the bedroom, taping the action from the hallway. D.J. disappears to the living room.

All is well until the sinister chow releases a blood-curdling bark, disturbing the serenity of the scene.

Byron lowers the camera and says, "Hey, dog, gimme a fuckin' break."

The dog eventually complies, and the action resumes -- Marx on the bed doggie-style, while Styles kneels behind her, only the back of his head visible.

"Okay," Byron says after about ten minutes, "I'm fuckin' bored."

That means it's time to get down to business, time for the talent to really earn their pay. For Marx, this means acting enthusiastic, moaning here, screaming there, generally trying to give the impression that she actually enjoys what she's doing.

For Styles, this means staying hard and lasting long enough for three positions and the pop shot. But he's a professional with more than 100 movies to his name. He's been doing this for years, since he left behind a career at Johnson Space Center's Mission Control. Today, he'll prove his professionalism when complications arise, and he'll come through in the clutch. Meaning: He'll come. In a small, hot, cramped bedroom, with two video cameras fixed on him, he'll provide the pop shot.

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