The word masterpiece could be on the tongues of many critics and movie lovers once they have seen the initial London Gunn production Spartacus XXX. Much of the credit will have to go to multi-talented director-actor Marcus London, his real-life leading lady Devon Lee, and his best friend and my Apache Warrior for November Tommy Gunn. In my interview with Marcus, his in-depth analysis about the making of Spartacus XXX along with his inner feelings of his career will allow people to better appreciate this man. I want to personally thank Marcus for allowing me to include the never before seen footage of Spartacus XXX in this article. Hi Marcus, congratulations on the critically-acclaimed praise for your ambitious epic film Spartacus XXX and in particular on winning the recent Nightmoves award. How was this project developed? Why did you decide to make Spartacus XXX the first film from your new studio London Gunn Productions?
The project came to light after I had been told to watch the new TV series Spartacus. Being a big fan of gladiator films, I never expected a TV version of this type of film to be as amazing as this was. It was shortly after finishing the complete season that I realized I could not possibly make another movie until we attempt to make our own version of the historic Spartacus story. In the end, the choice was an obvious one. Unlike many of the movies and parodies being made, no other project had sex and passion like this film and that is why we chose this as our first big movie.
I admire the hours of hard work that you and your crew had put in making the actual set and also in creating the gladiator-type atmosphere during the filming of this production. How vital was it that you captured the authentic feel of that type of culture and era? In addition, a lot of credit has to go to the wardrobe department in having those awesome looking costumes.
We knew to do this we would need to approach this like a mainstream feature film to do this movie justice and produce a product that others could only envy. We would need to build, design, and fabricate all the sets, weapons, and costumes to keep the authentic look that makes these kinds of movies stand out. However, that would only be part of what we would need to do to put this film in a class of its own.
We felt the only way to get the performance from our characters and cast was to have them in an environment with sets made of real wood not foam or plastic and to put them in situations which would bring out their emotions and channel themselves back to the time of 70 B.C. when life, death and sex went hand in hand. We knew that doing our fight scenes outside in 100 degree heat would be tough on all concerned, but the lighting and the feel of those scenes would be worth it.
Also, I really like that despite the manly atmosphere, there is still a very good sense of sex appeal from the lovely beauties such as Devon Lee and Gracie Glam. As to the sex scenes, what was your vision on how those performances would translate into the entire storyline and setting of the movie?
Delivering great passionate sex scenes was a given, but to do it in a way where the sex could not be looked upon as porn, but erotica, beautiful, sexy, and always within the characters' guidelines. Never jumping back into the pornstar trap which we see happen in most big movies today.
I designed the sex scenes around the characters and their relationships with each other and the feel of each scene drives the story along with each encounter from the passion of Crixus and Milana to the violent taunting of Spartacus by Ilithyia over the loss of his wife Sura.
I have to mention that the gladiators in this film are very fit and hunky. How vital was it that you captured the authentic and intense feel of the gritty fight scenes? Could you explain to us how the fight scenes were practiced so that no one would get badly hurt?
As the fight scenes were to be a real, we knew using real wood and steel swords training would be very important as would making all the gladiator costumes from the ground up. Helmets, swords shields, and leather armor all would need to be able to stand up to the punishment we would put them through and renting was not an option.
Many people were concerned with the amount of men in the cast. In many cases, other companies would have filled those parts with women, but we were not going to ruin a great movie due to porn's fear of doing things differently. The story and the movie were important not the stars within it so we wanted to break the mold and shake things up a little and that's what we did. A gladiator movie with gladiators and beautiful female slaves and noble women using them for their pleasure.
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I choose my gladiators for this movie based upon their physical appearance and the acting abilities not to mention their drive and willingness to give me 110% in the coming days because we wanted our fight scenes to be raw and gritty. The fight choreography would need to be designed by professionals although we would play a major part in the creation of these scenes. Safety was a serious issue as we were going to be using real weapons not plastic nor foam. One mistake could be fatal. We contacted our friend in Canada who was originally going to help us do the movie in 3D and ask him to fly down and coordinate all the fight sequences as he and his team had been responsible for movies like Chronicles of Riddick, Bulletproof Monk, and Scott Pilgrim vs The World. After I had sent him the fight scene script and the previews for the three action sequences, he went to work on designing the concept fights by shooting his men fighting with wooden swords and shields and wires to give me the look I needed to make this the greatest adult movie ever shot.
Tommy Gunn and Devon Lee
Tommy Gunn is perfectly suited for the role of a gladiator. Could you tell us about his role in this film? On a personal note, how long have you known Tommy and how did you guys meet?
Tommy's role in this movie wrote itself. There was never a doubt in my mind who he would be. Crixus, the champion of Capua, had displayed qualities that I had seen in Tommy Gunn. The will to be the best and always pushing himself to be better. No one could have played this role better. No one would have spent the time to get to know who this man was and to go to the lengths of having hair extensions to become more in touch with his character. Overkill some might say, but we never looked at this movie as a porn to us. This was a mainstream movie only with sex.
His role of Crixus is as important as the role as Spartacus. His screen time is equal to if not more than mine as are Lucretia (Devon Lee) and Batiatus (Tony D Sergio). All the characters are stars in this movie. Each one as important as the next.
Tommy's role as the champion gladiator and reluctant lover of Lucretia show him as he struggles with his feelings for Milana, a virginal servant to Lucretia and his pain when he is told to deflower her in front of senator Marcus Claudius as a show of his other talents.
Myself and Tommy met on the set of The Darkside. It was directed by James Avalon over five years ago. There we had talked about doing such a movie and began writing scripts some of which you will have seen in my Penthouse movies. Many are still locked away in my pc waiting to be unleashed.
I also love that your wife Devon Lee has a very high powered role in this film. Could you tell us about her character? How did you meet her?
Devon was not always going to be the lead female role, but it became obvious that no other woman would try as hard to become the character and the fact I could school her for months before the shoot to make sure she could deliver the performance that I would require for Lucretia. Plus, it was time she was given a decent role as no one else would give her the chance in a role like this. Being the wife of Batiatus, she is not only a woman with power, but a woman who needs sex, passion, and the love of Crixus who is a man who is beneath her making the union taboo, but exciting and dangerous.
I met Devon at dinner in the Cheesecake Factory and a LA Direct night out five years ago and we have been together ever since.
Marcus London and Francois Clousot
As I had mentioned earlier, this film is your first one for London Gunn Productions. Why did you and Tommy Gunn pair up to make your own adult film company? What is the studio's main vision as you continue to make high quality adult productions?
Myself and Tommy have always wanted to make the same type of movies. We knew that together we were more powerful and our strengths would allow us to accomplish things others could only dream of. Our vision is the same today as it always was to combine mainstream quality action with adult content.
I have enjoyed your work ever since you have entered this industry. What did you do before you entered the adult film world? How did you enter the adult industry?
Back in the UK, I was a male stripper and strip club manager for many years. I began modeling and soon got offered work in soft core magazines. Soon, it became hardcore and after five years, I came out here with my ex McKenzie Lee and never went home.
What has been your most pleasurable moments in this business? What has been your least pleasurable ones?
For me the most pleasurable times in this biz are when I am involved in a large scale film with a high budget and a good role like that of Top Guns by Digital Playground or 2040 from Wicked Pictures not to mention Operation Desert and Tropical Stormy both of which I wrote with Stormy Daniels.
Another endeavor that you and your talented wife Devon Lee have gained much praise for has been your catering company to the adult film industry. Could you tell us how you and she came up with this inspiration?
Our company Accidental Catering was exactly that. I was directing my second movie for Wicked Private Lessons and decided to cater it ourselves as I had always had noticed that the caters made so much noise while we filmed that it became a problem for me. Anyway, so the cast and crew liked our cooking so much that the rest of the directors from Wicked then asked us to cover all of their movies and like most things in life, the word spread and we began doing work with Digital Playground, Cal Exotics, Adam and Eve, and numerous other companies in and out of the biz.
In your opinion, what makes a woman sexy? What traits of a woman do you admire?
The kind of women that I like are generally and what I consider sexy are the ones that can wake up in the morning without a lick of makeup and still look stunning. Devon is one of those women which is why I married her. I've never been a fan of make up. It's what is underneath that counts and as you will all see from Spartacus, this is the approach that I adopted in this movie. I picked women who at the casting came with the least amount of make up on their faces and that nailed the characters they were reading. Although I was trying to avoid breast implants when I found the right girl for the role, if she had them, I just had to overlook it as we all know most girls in this biz have them these days.
I also like a woman who is down to earth and not full of herself and not high maintenance. I guess part tom boy and part princess, like Devon Lee.
One of my favorite series that I love to see you in is Pink Visual's Couples Seduce Teens? How is it like working and being in a scene with your wife?
The Pink Visual series was always a fun thing to work on. I must say I love working with my wife and would do it everyday if we were booked together more, but I do prefer it to be just us in a scene so I can concentrate on her as I know she is not a fan of sharing me lol.
Are there any industry people (actors, actresses, directors, etc.) who you have not had the opportunity to work with yet and want to very badly and why?
To be blunt and honest, I have shot will the best directors in this biz and there is no one out there that I consider in my league. As conceited as that may sound, the few that I look up to like Brad Armstrong, Robby D, Stormy Daniels, and not forgetting the best action director in this biz Nick Andrews who has been helping me with Spartacus from day one, it's these people who I have watched and learned from and one thing that makes me different is that I don't direct for the money. I do it because I love making real movies. I couldn't care less about the porn and sex that a blind man can do with the right talent. It shoots itself, but getting the dialogue right and the performance are what is important to me. Maybe that's why we are working on a number of projects that are not adult related such as B horror movies etc.
All this time I've been in the biz out in the USA, I've only shot with a handful of companies. The main ones being Wicked Pictures, Penthouse, Vivid, Digital Playground. It seems that no other gonzo type companies book me and I am ok with that as much as i could run rings around whatever talent they are using. I am happy where I am at these days.
How were you as a kid growing up?
As a kid, I was the model child. Well, that's how the teachers described me. I say I was just a good actor and fooled them all lol. But, you could say I was much like I am today. I was always around girls and I was always very active in sports and loved being outdoors.
I used to love skiing, swimming, riding motorbikes, going fishing, but these days other than the gym, I find so little time to do these things. I mean since March, I have put at least four to six hours a day into Spartacus. Some days up to fourteen hours with me and Tommy both. Once it's out, I will be working on the public relations and also, in planning our mainstream movie. So, I guess those hobbies will have to wait until I am done.
What is your favorite thing about being an adult performer?
I would have to say being a performer gives me one thing that no other job could and I don't mean the sex because to be honest I had more sex before I got in the biz. After all, I was a stripper and a barman and a nightclub manager so I had a stable supply of beautiful women every night. What I like is I work when I want to and turn work down I don't want to do allowing me the free time I crave to do whatever I want. Yes, I have to go to work and have sex with beautiful girls is a major plus but that's not why I am still here. I love being my own boss.
Are there any web sites or future projects that you would like to promote? What are you currently working on film wise?
I have been so busy with this epic movie Spartacus I've neglected my site of which I am shooting for again. Now, I have a little more free time helping Devon with her site and Tommy Gunn with his up-and-coming site not to mention his new clothing line which we hope to unveil when we do the screening of Spartacus in December at a Hollywood location yet to be disclosed. But, to give you an idea of what might be coming next from London Gunn, early next year we will release the movie The Invitation. A feature film not unlike Eyes Wide Shut which has a huge cast list and a large amount of swingers all in Venetian masks. There is a large scale orgy and double penetration scenes, double vaginal scenes, and a multiple partner situation that will make this movie an erotic hit with men and women alike. Then, shortly after, we will release the Players. It's a story about three friends. Myself, Tommy, and Tony de Sergio who sit around a poker table as we discuss women, marriage, and our secrets all shot in the style of Alfie where we break the forth wall and talk to the camera addressing the viewer as we have sex with these beautiful women. The next project in line for us will be The Day. It's a mainstream zombie movie.