Life might have been very different for stand-up comedian and filmmaker Gary Eck. I Could Have Been A Porn Star is the title of his Sydney Comedy Festival show, and we took five with Eck to find out all about it.

What’s the story behind I Could Have Been A Porn Star?

When I was at uni in Canberra, I answered an ad in the paper that said something to the effect of, ‘Copywriter required for fast-growing and dynamic company. Must be funny and creative. $80 an hour.’ This was over 20 years ago and 80 bucks an hour seemed lot of money to pay a copywriter. I thought, ‘There’s got to be a catch.’ And there was.

As I stepped into the foyer of this fast-growing and dynamic business, all I could see were adult movie posters plastered on the walls. The job required watching soon-to-be-released pornos and writing the back cover review for them.

Not many young men or women dream of growing up to be an adult film star – or do they? Were you one of them?

To be honest, when I was younger, no. But as I get older… hmmm. I think more people would be encouraged to get into pornos if it wasn’t so frowned upon. Most porn films are actually quite tame. It’s just the odd Eastern European one that makes you go, ‘What the?’ and gives porn a bad name. Maybe more young people would be encouraged to get into this industry if porn education was added to the school curriculum – Maths, Double Chemistry, Advanced Fake Orgasm, How To Eyeball The Camera, Fluffing For Beginners.

You did end up working in film, of course – you worked with George Miller on Happy Feet Two. It must be a proud achievement – what was it like at the time?

Epic. Every moment was epic. It was a shame I wasn’t making the movie Epic. I worked on Happy Feet Two for nearly four years. Longest gig I’ve ever had, which in this industry to work continuously for that amount of time is quite something. I learnt so much from George and from so many others while working on the project, so I’m really fortunate.

What opportunities has Happy Feet Two opened up for you?

After Happy Feet I decided to write my own screenplay, thinking it would take about three months. Which it did, plus another 15 months of rewrites. It’s in a good place now and thanks to people I’ve met on Happy Feet I was able to get it to some important moviemaking people. With any luck I’ll get to make it next year and if that fails I really will become a porn star.

I Could Have Been A Pornstar will be running at Happy Endings Comedy Club from Tuesday May 13 until Saturday May 17 as part of the Sydney Comedy Festival, tickets available online.

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