Slater wanted more sex scenes, so he made his own.
The porn industry was going through a major transitional period in the mid-2000’s and Justin Kelly’s directorial follow up to his debut I am Michael shows it. King Cobra is the story of the rise and fall of Sean Lockhart; Porn name Brent Corrigan. The film is an insane ride, full of sex, drama and Christian Slater. The Knockturnal spoke to Kelly and Slater about working on such a ballsy biopic.
“You are fitting a massive amount of time into a movie so you have to pick what stays and what goes,” Kelly said in reference to the film being an adaptation of real life. The filmmaker optioned Cobra Killer, a book based on the events, and used this to strongly influence certain moments in the movie. “It’s a real economical take on Sean and his first foray into porn and the subsequent fight of his likeness.”
James Franco stars in and produced King Cobra and in many respects that really shows. The Spring Breakers vibes are real.
“James and I had a great time working together on I am Micheal and wanted to work on something else,” Kelly said. “This story is so wild, it’s almost too good to be true. Truth is often stranger than fiction. He was drawn to it and thought it would be a good film.”
Christian Slater, who plays Stephen, a man who begins as Sean’s mentor and producer but ends in a much different place, was also stoked to work with Franco.
“I worked with James Franco on The Adderall Diaries. It was exciting and thrilling, but I was also a little nervous,” Slater said in regards to his work on King Cobra. He enjoyed working with Franco and even got jealous of some of the scenes Kelly had cast his character in.
“He said James was gonna do a lion’s share of the sexual aspects and I got competitive. I want to do everything. So I had some moments.” Slater joked. As it turns out the one sex scene Slater participated in was entirely improved and was not written into the script.
Cinephiles everywhere will immediately compare this film to Paul Thomas Anderson’s cult hit Boogie Nights, as the subject matter involves the same industry. The film was a huge influence on Kelly.
“I can only aim and be so happy to make a film like Boogie Nights. It’s also been one of my favorites,” the director commented.
“I’ve always loved the mix of camp and drama. There are those camp moments with stilted wooden porn dialogue and Mark Wahlberg doing the karate chops in the mirror. I like the balance of it being ridiculous, but also serious.”
The evening was sponsored by SVEDKA Vodka and Hornet. After the screening guests headed to The Cock for SVEDKA cocktails, King Cobra beer and music by DJ Valdez complete with male Gogo dancers in thong jock straps and tube socks supplied by Nasty Pig.
King Cobra is in select theaters now.