James Deen: Wholesome-Looking, Boy-Next-Door Is Porn's Hottest Star
Deen has built a career from having a wholesome look and boy-next-door charm.
Feb. 2, 2012— -- What if that dashing boy-next-door, that one seems wholesome and has a the cute smile, was on the Internet beckoning and ready to romance your every whim and sexual fantasy.
That's what women find so appealing about James Deen.
With his curly brown hair, soft blue eyes and fit body, this 25-year-old porn sensation from Pasadena, Calif., looks like he could be your neighbor, you classmate or that cute guy at the bar you're hoping will catch your eye.
In an industry where women usually take center stage, Deen has become a porn superstar in his own right. He has starred in 4,000 movies and is the youngest person ever to win porn's "Male Performer of the Year." At this year's porn convention in Las Vegas, he was treated like a rock star, with fans fawning over him.
"When I got into this business, I never had any intention of ever winning an award. I never had an intention on ever having anyone know who I was," Deen said. "I intended to, you know, do a bunch of scenes, be good at my job, have a lot of fun."
For a guy whose stage name harkens back to Hollywood royalty, Deen's whole angle is that he is so "normal," and doesn't really look like he belongs in a world where gladiator-like, macho men are king and bigger is best.
"I'm kind of average, normal-looking, I don't know, I'm approachable," Deen said.
And for that, the ladies, especially teenage girls, adore him. Christina Ahlsen, 20, is a student in upstate New York who said she is one of Deen's biggest fans and is going to become a "James Deen loyalist." Ahlsen said she often checks up on Deen on through Tumblr, and even has a setting to track when his name is mentioned on the blogging platform.
"The first time I saw him, it was kind of really relieving," Ahlsen said. "Because in porn, the males are usually guys I'm not even close to being attracted to. He is just accessible, he looks like somebody that I could see at, you know, a coffee shop or something and actually approach, I mean, if he were, you know, just a regular guy. He is a regular guy."
And she's not alone. There are thousands of women out there who share Ahlsen's enthusiasm for all things Deen and participate in an active online community -- from trading images of him to posting fan-made pictures to writing swooning messages. It's a wide obsession for his approachable appeal that the man himself said he doesn't fully understand.
"I have no idea," Deen said. "I really, really have no clue."
So how did Deen make his transition from a young Jewish kid growing up in SoCal, to a teen internet porn sensation? He claims that he first became interested in become a porn star when he was in kindergarten and found an old porn magazine.
"I picked it up and I'm like, 'oh my God, this is the cool, this is awesome,'" he said. "It was this weird moment that I will always remember where I was like, this is what I want to be when I grow up. I want to do this."
Deen said he was even suspended once for telling a teacher he dreamed of becoming a porn star. His career took off much later after he turned 18 when he began sharing stories about his life online.
"Basically, until I started my blog, I really thought that I-- no one really knew who I was," Deen said. "Because the way I always say it is, 'I'm only useful from my belly button to my knees,' and I think everything else is pretty much just there."