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Wednesday, January 18, 2021

I first learned about Pirates, the technically ground-breaking porn movie spectacular (it’s the first porn filmed in high-def, and has loads of CGI effects), while reading a New York Times’ report about the Adult Video News Awards and how it reflects the evolving nature of the industry.

Little did I know there was a Tampa Bay angle to this tour-de-force production: It turns out that high-seas pirate ship scenes were filmed at the St. Petersburg Pier’s HMS Bounty tourist attraction. And the moviemakers pulled some fast ones to get permission to shoot a porno flick at a family attraction:

On May 2, a Brain Zoo representative named Ali Davoudian e-mailed this film synopsis to Bounty officials (complete with misspellings): “The movie is a comedy Sinbad type of film in quest of a magical scepter with lots of special effects and sward fighting with skeletons etc… It is not going to be released in the theater it is going to be on TV like showtime. As far as rating I would say PG-13.”

“There was nothing in the script that indicated there was anything perverse,” said [Bob] Hansen, the ship’s owner.

The Pier, which is owned by the city, rented Davoudian an activity room for cast, crew and equipment storage from June 1 to 5, at a cost of $1,872.50, and roped off areas near the boat for camera equipment.

After the first night, the Pier got a tip that some of the actors on the ship resembled well-known adult film stars. Hansen said film reps admitted the actors were popular porn stars who might draw extra attention to the project, but the film was definitely not a porno. He said Bounty officials and crew remained on the set during the entire shoot.

“We actually looked at the concept of canceling it, but with the contract, I couldn’t do it for no reason,” Hanson said. “Just because they’re porn stars doesn’t mean they can’t come on the boat or walk down the Pier.”

Hey, there’s no such thing as bad publicity! It’s a shame the city insisted on the removal of any mention of their role from the film’s credits.

The Bounty leaves St. Pete in March, so if you want to drop by for a gawk, do it now. Not much chance that the production left behind any mementos…

- Costa Tsiokos, Wed 01/18/2006 05:08:48 PM
Category: Florida Livin', Movies | Permalink |

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