Georgia-native, former Junior Olympian and “Southern belle” Sunny Lane is, indisputably, one of adult entertainment’s most ambitious and talented stars. Having won numerous industry awards for her work in adult film, Sunny is also one of the most sought-after legal courtesans at Dennis Hof’s World Famous Moonlite Bunny Ranch in Carson City, Nevada. Sunny shares with us a bit about her personal life and her professional careers, as well as her thoughts on the adult entertainment industry today.
C.J. Asher – First of all, thank you for this interview! Tell me a little about yourself… how old are you and where are you from?
Sunny Lane – I was born in the sweet state of Georgia. But, I was raised in the juicy state of Florida – also known as the “Dirty South!” I’m the original “girl next door turned hardcore!” I’m self-taught in everything that I have done in my career. As far as age… don’t you know a gentleman never asks a girl that? (winks)
C.J. Asher – Tell me a little about your early aspirations to become an Olympic figure skater.
Sunny Lane – I was a Junior Olympian. A car accident took me away from the sport for a moment. I was working on heading all the way to the Olympics. I recouped and came back to skating, and had my own Yoga and Pilates business. I was also an ice-skating coach in Tampa. There, I would begin to coach figure skating, and all of the Lightning players’ kids for hockey, edges, basic skills learning, etc. Shortly after I began, I had to have foot surgery. That’s when I started figuring out how to switch paths.
C.J. Asher – How did you first get into the adult entertainment industry?
Sunny Lane – I asked the Tampa Bay Lightning what the hottest club in town to dance at was. The Lightning players were the one’s who gave me a lead to start dancing at the Déjà Vu Night Club in Tampa. This would be the trigger to launch the rest of my career that I still maintain to this day.
C.J. Asher – How did you choose your stage name?
Sunny Lane – People always told me that I had a “sunny” disposition, and that I brought sunshine into their lives. So, when I started working in the adult industry, I thought of the name Sunny Lane. That way, if the fans wanted some sunshine, they would have to come down my lane!
C.J. Asher – How did you first meet Dennis Hof and how did you decide to work at the Moonlite Bunny Ranch?
Sunny Lane – I met Ron Jeremy and Dennis Hof in Tampa while I was dancing at Déjà Vu. Believe it or not, I ran into them about a month later, because I won tickets to the Billboard Awards in Las Vegas. I was in the pressroom for the Awards show, and then Ron came up to me, and remembered me from Florida. He re-introduced me to Dennis, we hit it off, and he asked me to come work at the Ranch. And, the rest as they say…
Almost simultaneously, NightMoves Magazine crowned me as Calendar Covergirl 2005, and sent me to the AVN Awards Show. There, Farrell Hirsch from Vivid Radio found me and set me up with Playboy, doing radio, TV, and print. That is how I was able to transition into the adult film world. You see, it’s really been the balance of working in adult films and working at a legal brothel that has made my career successful.
C.J. Asher – What do you do outside of the adult entertainment industry to relax, unwind and have fun?
Sunny Lane – I enjoy doing my yoga and exercise. I love to travel, watch really cool TV shows, and eat at great restaurants. I’m a big foodie! I also love reading graphic novels and comics, and collecting memorabilia.
C.J. Asher – What television shows are you into right now?
Sunny Lane – At the moment, I just finished Farscape, which was amazing! I’m now watching Firefly, and then I’m moving on to Dollhouse. As well, while I’m checking out those shows, on current playing TV, I’m tossing in The Walking Dead, and Survivor. Can’t wait to gorge on Daredevil season two. Also… Orphan Black. I also watch local and national news and PBS everyday, as well as all the entertainment news.
C.J. Asher – What are your favorite industry-related events, such as the Adult Entertainment Expo, EXXXOTICA and gentlemen’s club appearances?
Sunny Lane – I really enjoy all of those industry-related events, because it allows me to get up-close and personal with my fans. Any chance that I get to do that, it’s a great time for me.
C.J. Asher – What advice would you give to someone who wants to become an adult film actress or a working girl?
Sunny Lane – At this stage in the adult entertainment biz, I definitely don’t have the same advice that I would have given when I started. In fact, I’m not even sure if I would advise it at all, unless you’re ready to literally bust your ass. It’s a whole new world with the way things are shot – gonzo vs. features, pay, quality of sets, condom laws, etc. Cam girls are really the one’s that are becoming the new porn stars. What I can say is that it’s extremely difficult, even more so, than when I started to get in, because there are so many girls out there trying to do the same thing. It’s like trying to become a YouTube or Vine sensation. But, as with anything, it takes education, time, dedication, and stamina. So, if you want to achieve your goal of becoming an adult film actress, you can do it with those four things.
As far as becoming a brothel worker, that’s definitely more attainable, but still requires the four points that I mentioned above. Many girls think that they can just go work at a brothel, and it’s easy, it’s just fucking, and that’s that. This is not the case. You have to have the right personality, and conviction. You have to deal with many personalities in the brothel world. From clients, to co-workers, employers, and the space you are given to live in. It’s really more of a mental job than a physical one. Though, of course the physical is a big part of it, lol.
I would suggest to any girl, to learn about this type of work as much as you can. Go up on the message boards at the ranches, such as Moonlite Bunny Ranch, Love Ranch Vegas, etc. You need to get an idea of how it all works before you attempt to apply. Otherwise, you are wasting their time and yours. After you feel comfortable, apply for a job. That’s about it. In a couple weeks or a couple of months, you’ll know if it’s right for you. I’ve seen girls only stay for a week, and I know girls that have been there for a decade. It’s all about your mindset, and your attitude.
C.J. Asher – Besides the money, of course, what’s your favorite part about being an adult entertainer?
Sunny Lane – Money? You obviously, haven’t done your research. (laughs) Go ahead and ask me how much an adult film star makes per film, scene, etc. There’s the cost of being tested, agency fees, makeup, nails, hair, clothing, travel, lodging, etc. Let’s just say you are lucky if you come out in the green. And, my private shoots for my website members, all comes completely out of my pocket. For me, at least, it all comes down to doing everything. And, it’s a lot of hard work. I wouldn’t be able to make a living without doing it all. I am a brothel worker and an adult performer. I run my own website, where I do weekly cam shows (It’s Always Sunny, SunnyLaneLive.com) for the VNA network with Vicky Vette, and I post new content once a week. I am a dancer at nightclubs. I do phone sex, sexting, and private camming. Social media is about a six hour a day job. I also do message boards, forums, and emails that come to the ranches, and to my website. Add in private shoots, and lots of traveling, and that’s quite a bit. A lot of it is done for no money at all. What I most enjoy about the biz, and what I have always enjoyed the most, has been my fans. The website sends fans to the brothels, and vice versa. Someone from my phone sex line becomes a member to my site or comes to see me at the Ranch. If you miss one element of it, the train stops.
Fan interaction is key. And you have to interact with your fans on all levels. That is what I most enjoy, and that is necessary, to continue to do the work that I do. My fans and clients, some of who are now family, are everything to me. The greatest part is being able to express my creativity, and to entertain.
C.J. Asher – What’s the most stressful part of your job?
Sunny Lane – The most stressful part of my job is the time that it takes to do it. But, I enjoy everything about my job, so, that becomes kind of a moot point.
C.J. Asher – Do family and friends know what you do and what do they think about it?
Sunny Lane – Anyone in my life knows what I do. I don’t try to play possum or hide from anyone. Everyone is entitled to his or her own ideals and opinions. But, as you can probably guess, some of my family and friends completely support what I do, others are on the fence, and some don’t support me at all. This is typical for anyone working in this industry. I’m lucky to have the support of “certain” friends and family, where the bonds are very strong, and they help me walk this life every day.
C.J. Asher – Do you feel that, as a woman, working as an adult entertainer is empowering or exploiting?
Sunny Lane – I feel that it’s completely empowering. However, others bring exploitation upon us. It comes with the territory. But it shouldn’t have to. Just because we do what we do as women, should not be a platform for others to abuse, disgrace, or shame us as individuals.
A lot of people out there believe, that just because of our occupation, that it creates an open door for them to rape, harass, and defame us. The empowerment comes from being able to open this up for discussion in the first place. Secondly, for being able to stand the ground in support of what I do “legally” for all the girls out there working. Whether it is at the brothel or in the adult business, we have the freedom, and the right to do as we choose. It’s my life and my body, and it’s no one else’s place to tell me what I can and can’t do, as long as I’m not hurting anyone, and doing everything by the book.
C.J. Asher – What’s the nicest compliment or rudest comment you’ve ever received from a fan?
Sunny Lane – My fans compliment me very highly. If I get rude comments from persons, then they aren’t my fans. If it happens in person, I usually have security nearby, in case they want to get rowdy, but I never engage. If it happens online, I block them.
C.J. Asher – What categories of porn do you prefer working in?
Sunny Lane – I really like story/script driven films. In addition to the sex that I perform in movies… I really, love to act, and carry out the roles of my characters. So, the more dialogue, the better. I loved doing Dark Angels 2: Bloodline, Alice, Batgirl XXX, RollerDollz, The Stripper 2, Love Boat, and a lot of the script-driven roles, and parodies of mainstream movies. And I still love to do the Gonzo, as well: Big Wet Asses 13, Goo Girls 26 – which were both AVN Award winners – POV Fantasies, etc. I also still love doing the vignettes for Brazzers, Naughty America, etc. As well, I love doing my solo work for my website, SunnyLaneLive.com, and Live Camming.
C.J. Asher – Conversely, what types of roles would you turn down?
Sunny Lane – So far, there has been nothing that I won’t do, as long as it’s done respectfully. If there is something you haven’t seen me do, that makes you wonder…? Then, it hasn’t been presented to me in the right way yet.
C.J. Asher – How do you feel about various attempts at passing measures to make condom usage mandatory in adult films?
Sunny Lane – In general, to answer your question, I don’t agree with Measure B. I believe it sets a precedent to continue to take away adult workers’ rights. We are already seeing it happen with the actions of the AHF, and their president, Michael Weinstein. Without going into much detail here – do your research, kids – his intentions are set to destroy everything that we do, and to take away all of our rights as performers. The AHF just tried to pass a bill that would have given individuals the right to sue any performer if they stumbled upon the performers content on the Internet and felt offended. Thank goodness the organizations APAC, FSC, & the performers ourselves, made sure that didn’t come to pass. The government – cities and states – needs to get everyone on the same page. The lines are so blurred depending on where you are, who you are, or where you work, that there is too much room for error. All I care about is safety. Safety is number one.
I can tell you, without a doubt, that the brothels’ tests and procedures are safer than anywhere, or anyone’s system. The testing is the most rigorous and conducted weekly, you are required to have a Sheriff’s card to work, and condoms are always required. In the adult industry, it’s all over the place. You must be 2257 compliant, and are tested every two weeks.
In California, if you are shooting heterosexual films, you must be tested and wear a condom. If you are shooting homosexual films, you have to wear a condom, but you don’t have to get tested. In Nevada, and other states you must be 2257 compliant and get tested, but you do not have to wear condoms (heterosexual or homosexual).
I’ll leave it to you to ponder what you think about those rules. I believe that all people, both adult performers as well as civilians, need to be tested on a regular basis. This is more important than anything else.
For more information about Sunny Lane, check out http://sunnylanelive.com. You can also check out her work as a legal courtesan at the Moonlite Bunny Ranch at http://www.bunnyranch.com/bunnybabes/SunnyLane.php, follow her on Facebook, YouTube and Twitter and send her a gift through her Amazon Wishlist page.