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With Passover right around the corner, we couldn't help but think about how many porn stars come from Jewish backgrounds. Whether they practice or not, so many industry veterans are of Jewish decent, and some of the most popular up-and-comers are too. There are a few top stars that have been featured on lists before, but some of these bright, young things deserve recognition for representing the new generation of Semitic hotties.

Abella Danger

Abella Danger, the 2016 AVN Best New Starlet, has made quite a name for herself since her start in 2014. Danger’s first shoot was with Bang Bros productions in Miami, and shortly after this shoot, she was contacted by an agency in Los Angeles to begin filming in mid-2014. Abella is represented by Mark Spiegler Casting and Management, one of the top agencies in the industry, and her career skyrocketed since appearing in her first scene. Abella has performed in lesbian, anal, interracial, BDSM, and plot-oriented scenes. She has worked for all the major studios, and some of her latest work with Girlfriends Films has shown that she has a real knack for dramatic roles, as well as ass-tastic gonzo.

Casey Calvert

Casey won Best New Starlet at the 2014 AVN awards, and has since then she has become a top name in XXX. Not only is Casey a fan favorite, but she has cultivated a personae of grace and charm, while continuing to be daring in the roles she chooses. Casey was born in Florida and comes from an upper-middle class family. She played soccer and did gymnastics in grade school. She enjoys hiking, scuba diving, and rock climbing. Casey earned a Bachelor's Degree from the University of Florida prior to entering the adult entertainment business in 2012. Casey started in adult as a glamour model, then did nude fetish shoots, and gradually became interested in hardcore. Within two years of her process, Casey filmed for the big name studios, and secured her place as a long-term industry star.

Joanna Angel

Joanna comes from a conservative, orthodox Jewish background, went to a Yeshiva high school before switching to public school. Referred to as the "Queen of Alt-Porn," Joanna Angel graduated high school at age 17 and subsequently enrolled at Rutgers University—earning a B.A. in English Literature with a minor in Film Studies. After college, she started Burning Angel, an independent site that celebrates the intersection of sex and rock n' roll with erotic photos and hardcore XXX movies, alongside her interviews with punk and indie bands including Marilyn Manson, My Chemical Romance, the Bouncing Souls, and Bad Religion, among many others. Burning Angel is widely successful, and has helped hundreds of starlets on the way to successful careers. When asked about whether or not her parents are cool with her career choice, Joanna admits they were not happy about it at first, but her entire family knows what she does, they support her, and they are very proud of her success.

Dana DeArmond

Dana DeArmond – one of the few porn starlets who actually uses her real name as her stage name – has been performing her whole life, from being an ice skater in her youth, to dancing, to finally to becoming an adult film star. Performing is something she clearly enjoys, with her scenes always bursting with energy, enthusiasm, and the complete raunchiness that is Dana's brand. All of these are well-known traits of Dana's, but fans of hers might not be aware that the "Internet's Girlfriend" is also a Jewish queen!

Jennifer White

Thanks to Joanna Angel's studio, Burning Angel Entertainment, and the 2017 release of Jews Love Black Cock, the porn world was introduced to the fact that brunette beauty Jennifer White is another member of the tribe! The petite, 5'1" star began performing in the adult industry in 2009 after working in both a coffee shop and a tanning salon. Having met porn stars through her various avenues of work, Jennifer began exploring her options in the XXX realm and eventually filmed her first scene for Vivid Entertainment. She's almost worked in porn for a decade now, expanding her career into anal, BDSM, interracial, group sex, solo, and plot-oriented scenes.

Ron Jeremy

If you're on this website, you know who Ron is. Ron comes up on many of the "top porn star" lists due to a number of reasons, but many people don't really know about his background. Born and raised in New York City to a middle-class Jewish family, Ron attended Queens College and received a Bachelor’s Degree in Education and a Masters Degree in Special Education. Ron eventually took a job as a high school teacher in NYC. In 1978, a girlfriend sent his photo off to Playgirl magazine to appear in its "Boy Next Door" pages. After receiving very enthusiastic and positive feedback from readers and publishers, Ron decided to enter the adult industry full-time as a new career choice. Ron was in almost every single movie that came out in the 1980s (OK, that's not entirely true) and he became so popular in the adult industry that his star rose in mainstream culture as well. Most people who haven't seen his porn have seen him in the TV series Surreal Life with other notable celebrities, but Ron has popped up all over the place in recent years. Did you see him in Ghostbusters? Ron is everywhere.

Bobbi Dylan

East Coast-born and bred beauty Bobbi Dylan is a half-Ashkenazi porn star and proud of it! This BDSM-loving babe began filming in the adult industry in 2016 after working at a porn video store. Bobbi wanted to explore her sexual side onscreen, and has done so in genres like anal, interracial, bondage, Femdom, foot fetish, group sex, and plot-based scenes.

Juelz Ventura

While Juelz Ventura's Latin flavor is surely one of the things that keeps her fans so enticed, people neglect to realize that Juelz is also half-Jewish! Believe it or not, this Brazilian-born smokeshow is half-Lebanese Jewish on her mother's side. Winner of multiple AVN awards and featured on many adult magazine covers, Juelz’s success is due partially to the versatility of her filmography. Juelz can be seen performing lesbian, solo, BDSM, anal, interracial, plot-oriented and group sex scenes. The tattooed temptress has appeared in over 240 XXX movies throughout her decade-long adult film career.

Nina Hartley

Nina has been an advocate and a performer in this industry for over 3 decades! Not only does she have that special something to keep the fans interested, but she is a brilliant thinker, and a comedian at heart. Nina is the youngest of four children. She attended San Francisco State University as a nursing major, and in 1982—during her sophomore year—she began stripping at the world famous O’Farrell Theater run by the Mitchell Brothers. It was here that she chose the stage name of Nina Hartley. Nina made her adult film debut in 1984’s Educating Nina, and since has earned a reputation for her interracial and lesbian scenes, her round butt (often referred to as the “…best ass in the business”), and her legitimate acting skills. She has also been seen as an ambassador for porn to the mainstream: during several controversies and legal issues regarding adult films in the 1980’s, she was frequently the go-to spokeswoman to defend the industry for talk shows and media reports. Her articulate and thoughtful demeanor was particularly on display during a famous interview she did on The Oprah Winfrey Show, where she and fellow actress Ona Zee appeared to defend adult films—facing hostility from a mostly female audience. Hartley and Zee held their own in supporting the business. Nina was also the philandering porn star wife in Boogie Nights, which was easily one of the most memorable characters in that film.

Ona Zee

Ona is a great success story in porn. Previous to her career in adult, Ona had worked as a model with the Wilhelmina modeling agency and appeared in mainstream magazines, such as Cosmopolitan. She made her porn debut in 1987 when she was 36 years old, an age when many female porn stars are getting ready to retire from the industry. Regarding her decision to enter the adult film industry, Zee said, “I am an exhibitionist, so to take it to the nth degree was obviously where I was going. It took me a little longer to get there than some women but I knew I could be one of the best actress in adult films, if not the best.” Zee also served as the director, writer, and producer for 67 films she appeared in. She also opened her own production company, Ona Zee Pictures. Over the years, Zee performed in a variety of niches, including anal, double penetration, interracial, lesbian, and solo masturbation. She once described herself as "very bisexual". As of August 2007, she was selling real estate in Los Angeles for Coldwell Banker.

Gloria Leonard

When it comes to superstars in the industry, almost nobody can compare to Gloria Leonard. Her maturity and business savvy enabled her to become one of the more recognized and prolific adult stars of the Golden Age of Porn. Gloria didn't even enter into the business until she was 34. She won an AVN award for Best Actress, and she was also the publisher of High Society magazine from 1977 to 1991. The magazine famously published nude photos of celebrities Margot Kidder, Ann-Margret, and Barbra Streisand. She was also the administrative director of the Adult Film and Video Association of America. Leonard was a devout feminist and a huge supporter of the First Amendment. She also debated topics dealing with the business, censorship issues, and women's empowerment at many colleges and universities.

Jamie Gillis

Jamie is a polarizing character in the industry due to some of the content he filmed, and the persona he played up to in interviews and appearances. Nobody captures what the scene in New York City was like during the Golden Era of Porn like Jamie. Born in New York City, Jamie Gillis trained as an actor and graduated from Columbia University. He appeared in off-Broadway plays and drove cabs to pay the rent. He was, in all sense of the word, a regular guy. It wasn’t until he answered an ad in the Village Voice for nude modeling that his career in the adult entertainment business began. He started with live sex shows and porn loops. For much of the 70’s, Gillis was half of the most notorious couple in the adult industry with porn legend Serena. They were known as the S&M couple for their usual off-camera activities. And while it wasn’t unusual for actors to appear in S&M in the 70’s, Gillis stood out by virtue of his genuine enthusiasm, his gift for verbal abuse, and his willingness to go that extra mile. He became known as the pioneer of gonzo style films with his wildly successful series On The Prowl. He also helped to produce the popular Dirty Debutantes series with fellow producer Ed Powers.

Ed Powers

So many stars got their start from Ed Powers' series Dirty Debutantes. The series features amateur female performers, many never having done porn before, performing masturbation, sex with male performers, and occasionally lesbian scenes. Jamie Gillis was initially a co-producer on the series, and Jamie actually lived in Ed's house out in California after Ed had made the move from New York. Writer and amazing performer Aurora Snow's first film was in More Dirty Debutantes 152. Ed has made documentaries, done numerous radio shows, and has some fantastic insight about his time in the industry. He was born in Brooklyn, New York, and has never lost the "can do" attitude of the North East corridor. For more info on Ed, check out this article about his pioneering work in gonzo filmmaking.

Georgina Spelvin

In the early 70s, Georgina Spelvin started to pursue opportunities in theater and filmmaking. In 1973, a friend, adult film actor Harry Reems, recommended her to adult film director Gerard Damiano. Hired initially as a cook, Spelvin was promoted to the starring role of spinster Justine Jones in Gerard's next movie, the now infamous and celebrated The Devil in Miss Jones. The movie was an astounding success, and she became a real porn star. In fact, she adopted her stage name, Georgina Spelvin, for this particular movie. In 1974, Spelvin and Harry Reems reunited in another award winning classic, The Wet Rainbow. Spelvin published a book entitled The Devil Made Me Do It in 2008. In 2013, popular trip-hop band Massive Attack featured a recent interview of Spelvin in their video for "Paradise Circus" where Spelvin talks about her experience filming The Devil in Miss Jones, inter-spliced with images from the film.

Honorable Mention:

Jenna Jameson - (converted)

She's one of the biggest names in the industry, and she has made a ton of news in mainstream and adult worlds, but recently Jenna has been in the news for her engagement to an Israeli man. So, Jenna's social media has been filed with dreidels and kugel recipes. We wish her and her beau the best of luck for their future together.

There were plenty of names left of this list, as many notable people in front of and behind the camera have Jewish roots. Until next year, mazel tov, and enjoy the gefilte fish!


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