Hollywood Probably Won't Get Linda Lovelace's Story Right

Illustration for article titled Hollywood Probably Won't Get Linda Lovelace's Story Right

Porn. Gang-rape. Bestiality. Feminism. An abusive marriage. Hepatitis. Liver failure. Violent death. Basically none of the aspects of Deep Throat's Linda Lovelace's life are particularly audience-friendly so it's a little weird that two films are clamoring to tell her tale. Hers is certainly a fascinating story, but can either one of these movies get it right?

Lovelace was so much more than just the world's first cross-over adult film star. The heart of Linda Lovelace's story lies in her evolution of unabashed porn star to rape victim to feminist icon. In order to understand her, the dark elements of her life need to be fully explored, as they each had a domino effect on her life, with one event leading to the next. Ultimately, at her core, she was a woman who felt used and abused: First by husband, then the sex industry and, later, by feminists who aimed to make her a cautionary tale. And, let's face it, it will prove equally difficult for filmmakers to get an audience to sit through scenes of sex with a dog as it will scenes of hardcore second-wavers.


The concern here is that in order to make this film palatable to fill theater seats and turn a profit, much of the ickier—and more interesting—aspects of Lovelace's life will have to be cleaned up. As of right now, both films have been plagued with casting and financing issues. Essentially, if they ever do get made, and get made correctly, these films will be very uncomfortable and depressing. Plus, as Eric Danville, a Lovelace biographer points out, "It's a nasty story and it doesn't have a happy ending."

Deep Throat's Linda Lovelace and the Hollywood Twosome [The Week]

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Unfortunately, and this could be too cynical of me, but to my eyes all those things (in short, a portrayal of a woman under duress, or being degraded or exploited or suffering onscreen in a visceral manner and bonus points if she's played by a beautiful actress) are just the sort of audience/award bait that movie makers love.