Media Criticism

How to Edit a Scene with Fisting

I’m editing an episode right now and trying to figure out how to handle the fisting. When I shot it, I had no intention of making a political statement or getting drawn into a controversy. I simply have a policy of always allowing the performers I work with to choose what kinds of sex they engage in. I want people to be able to gravitate towards the sex that they are most into and that really gets them hot. So when Kimberly Gray and Jiz Lee made fisting the center piece of the sex they were having for their episode in Doing it Again, my only reaction was to get excited about how engaged they were, how they were having a ton of fun with each other, and how they were modeling excellent communication, walking each other through the intricacies of their bodies and their ability to receive a fist.

It was almost a year later that I found myself with a distribution deal with a mainstream distributor and the gears began to turn as I slowly realized they might have a problem with fisting. Suddenly I have a decision on my hands. I can still release an uncensored version on my website, but for the DVD will I have to try to edit out the fisting? Would there be anything left?


The best advice I got was to zoom and crop the video so that the actual penetration was not visible. Just show faces, reactions, and the shots from other angles so you can’t really see what’s going on. But here’s the thing – I’m all about explicitly discussing what’s going on in a scene. One of my favorite things to do is I interview performers and edit their discussion of what they were doing right into the sex they are having in the final edit of an episode. The more I thought about it, I realized that if I had to edit out all visible fisting, I would at least want to tell the audience with interviews and voiceover what kind of sex is happening.

I expect my audience to be smart. They’ll know something is up if two thirds of the sex is angled to obscure the actual sex going on. And if they are told that they are watching someone get fisted, I know that immediately they are going to want to get a closer look and will want to know why I’m not including one. So to give my audience the respect they deserve, I feel I’ve got to include discussion of that censorship as well. Once I realized that, I knew that I had the perfect concept for the episode.

As much as anything else this episode will be about the censorship of fisting. I went back and shot additional interview footage with Jiz discussing how the fisting might get edited out. We talked about why fisting is important to them and why they care about fisting being cut out of their scene. It goes into all the detail you might see from all these articles here on fisting day. And that’s going to be included whether the episode gets censored or not. Because either way, it’s a conversation we need to be having and I think it’s worth having that conversation not just around porn, but in porn itself.