Progsheet After Hours - A Few Words With...James Bartholet

Interview by John A. Wilcox

With 1 foot in the adult industry and the other in the mainstream, James Bartholet is a talent to be reckoned with. With an affable, engaging personality that steals most any scene you find him in, don't be surprised if he wrote and/or produced said scene himself! Progsheet After Hours had the good fortune of pulling the multi-faceted Bartholet away from his crazy schedule long enough to grant us an interview. Here's what we discussed...

PS: Where were you born?

JB: I was born in Northern California, to a great home, with a great upbringing from two very wonderful and supportive parents. A lot of times the public thinks there's a stereotype in the adult industry that anybody in this industry comes from a broken home and that's why they do this. On the large part, that is not always the case.

PS: Were you a creative kid / teen?

JB: Yes, very creative. I was very active in acting as a child, and art. I was always encouraged to do that. I was working as an actor, and even started doing radio in high school. I'm a Libra, and Libras are pretty creative people I've been told. I was making little skits and we were filming them and doing a lot of stage work. I learned, studied, and fine tuned my craft every week. You always keep learning and growing as an actor. That is something I teach my students when I teach my acting workshops.

PS: Do you recall the very first adult film you saw?

JB: Yes, it was the XXX version of Alice In Wonderland. Bill Osco's Alice In Wonderland: An Adult Musical Comedy directed by Bud Townsend, and starring the beautiful and sexy Kristene De Bell who went on to do mainstream work. I was watching this with some friends who were fairly famous actors at the time. This was back in the 80's, and they were all saying "Wow, look at that! but we could never do this!" and I'm thinking "Hmmm? I wonder?" LOL
They're like, "Gross, you're a pervert!" and I'm like "But look at the production value and the acting, this is pretty cool"
Now years later, it's cool and hip, go figure.
I co-star in a lot of the big productions and XXX musicals now.
I see our production values and the acting levels are higher then back then. I'm lucky to have gotten in back when parodies and features were really starting to take off. There's always been parodies in XXX, but what we've made these past ten years has been exceptional, I believe, and I'm proud to have been a part of this.
I'd also looked at a lot of Playboy, Penthouse, and Hustler magazines. I mean, what young hot-blooded horny kid didn't, right?!

PS: How long after that did you start to feel that working in the adult biz interested you?

JB: It was a while. I came from mainstream into adult. You don't hear a lot of people who do that, sometimes it's the other way around, right? I was working as an entertainment reporter, and I was covering the making of an adult film - The Reunion I believe, was the film. I was on the set and the director asked if I wanted to do a "walk on" role. At first, I was hesitant, but then I saw the women I would be working with, and I said YES! LOL
It all snowballed really quickly from there, I had mostly non-sex acting roles, and I have carved a large niche for myself in that category, but then I thought "I'm in the pool, why not swim into the deep end?". So I started doing roles that I was actually having in sex in as well. Now, after countless movies and gonzo scenes, and numerous awards, "Thank you AVN and XBIZ", I'm enjoying a lot of success and fame in this wonderful industry. I still work in mainstream movie and television projects, and like my friends Ron Jeremy, Evan Stone, James Deen, Sasha Grey, Riley Steele, and Misty Stone, I find that I can work in both adult and mainstream work successfully.

PS: You mention an interest in art as well as acting in your youth. What sort of art were you doing & what artists were commanding your attention at that time?

JB: I loved all kinds of art, and I loved watching Monty Python, it was just coming to states back then, and it was ahead of it's time. A lot of people didn't understand it, but I did, and I loved it. It inspired me for comedy and sketch comedy. Also, I watched a lot of Laugh-In, I worked for George Schlatter the producer of that classic television program on a short lived television series.

PS: What was the first production you worked after The Reunion?

JB: Ava Rose Stripped for Andre Madness, then The Real Boogie Nights, and then all the XXX comedies movies I did for Will Ryder and Scott David at X Play, and then prominent directors like Paul Thomas, Brad Armstrong, Stuart Canterbury, David Lord, Jonathan Morgan and the Maestro Axel Braun.

PS: What aspects, if any, of the biz at that time took you by surprise?

JB: How professional everybody was on the set. Seeing how people really care about turning in a quality release - and that's a good thing!

PS: What do you feel you were bringing to films that no one else was doing at that time?

JB: First, someone who can really act,and do comedy. Also, the "average" guy, The majority of men who watch our movies are average body types, they don't have wash board abs, and look like models. I have a lot of guys saying I helped fulfill that fantasy of being with that girl, because they can relate to me. I may not be some muscle clad Adonis, but I get the job done! Right? LOL
I've made a very nice niche for myself as a top non-sex character actor and a name performer/character actor.

PS: Has the intent and the talent changed in any way since you first entered the business?

JB: Of course, a lot has changed, some good and some bad, but mostly all for good. The Internet has changed the way people view adult and mainstream, and we need to adjust to that. While DVD may not totally go away as a way to watch our movies, the majority of people will be watching online, and hopefully downloading and renting the movies to watch legally.
About talent: I've seen a lot of new girls come in, for a minute, and for whatever their reasons are, and many of them don't stick around. New girls and guys need to know, that doing this is like a tattoo that you can never get rid of, so you better be sure that you really want to do this. Do you homework, learn about our industry first. Talk to family and friends, and have an exit plan for when you want to move on and what will you want to do then.

PS: It struck me that porn was moving away from stories & more toward individual scenes. Why do you feel it veered in that direction?

JB: Not necessarily, but yes we're finding that there's more scenes being shot and less of our storied features and parodies and again that's a budget thing and that's because of the declining DVD sales, piracy, and torrent and tube sites.

PS: Your recent work seems to be a new spin on the classic days but with a more wry, humorous spin. Is that a fair assessment?

JB: Yes, and thank you for noticing. I love working, and love making new characters for new projects that I'm working on come to life.

PS: How did you know that the time was right for that approach?

JB: Well, we've been doing this for a while now, and while I'm not writing the book, I think I'm adding to it. Again, I love this industry and the people in it, and I love our fans. The fans keep wanting more and we will be delivering it to them.

PS: Of the talent you've worked with, who - if anyone, surprised you with their comedic abilities?

JB: WOW, now that's a good sized list! LOL Some of the people that stand out in my mind are Penny Pax, Riley Steele, Misty Stone, Tommy Gunn, Luna Star, Alec Knight, Dick Chibbles, Evan Stone, Ron Jeremy, Asa Akira, Sunny Lane, James Deen, Tommy Pistol, Xander Corvus, Priya Rai, Britney Amber, Tia Cyrus, Ryan McLane, Norah Nova, Emy Reyes, and the list goes on and on. LOL

PS: Where can we follow you?

JB: You can follow me on Twitter: @jamesbartholet
FaceBook: James Bartholet
Instagram: jamesbartholet9
My official site:
I host Inside The Industry on on Wednesday nights 7 to 9 pm PST
I host AVN LIVE seen on

PS: What new projects can we look forward to?

JB: New movies out now or coming out this Fall: Barbarella XXX, This Ain't Modern Family XXX, This Ain't American Horror Story XXX, Beauty and The Beast XXX, and I've got a new scene at Dogfart where I play "The Donald" seen on "" I also play Bill Clinton for the Hillary Clinton parody on Dogfart, as well as Donald Sterling in a parody on there.I have a mainstream horror movie coming out this Fall: Hitchhiker Massacre, that I co-starred in and co-produced.


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Special thanks to James Bartholet for the photos!