In Memoriam: Gay Director John Summers

Posted August 23, 2010 6:44 AM by with 3 comments


Of all the people I’ve met working on this Chuck Holmes documentary, director John Summers was one of my favorites. He died yesterday morning in his North Hollywood home from an apparent heart attack.

Summers was one of the people most responsible for the Falcon look — he brought a style and class to post-Aspen movies that really set the studio apart. He claimed that one of my favorite of Summer’s movies, Style (1981) was the first porn where the boys were shaved. He also had Bruce Weber’s assistant Kyle Martin style the movie — clothes were brought in from Wilkes Bashford, hair was done, the feet were bleached and the 80s were ON.

Summers had come to San Francisco in the late 60s and ran a series of boy brothels with John Travis. Later, he, Travis, Matt Sterling and Chuck Holmes would become the founders of the industry as we know it. It was illegal, it was dangerous and to hear Summers tell it, it was a lot of fun. He was always behind the scenes (he never liked to be photographed) and always cooking up trouble (Vanity Fair once referred to only as the mysterious Black Buddha of Porn), but in my experience, always a pleasure to deal with. We shot an interview with him in March, and he’d call every couple of weeks to talk about bad Hollywood movies, money-making schemes, and the importance of high-quality mixed nuts. He loved art and orchids and preppies with big, big dicks. I’ll miss him a lot.


Select Filmography
Style (Falcon)
Big and Thick (HIS)
Two Handfuls (Bijou)

Tags: , , , , , , ,

3 responses to In Memoriam: Gay Director John Summers

  1. Anonymous August 23rd, 2010 at 8:49 AM

    So sad! I hadn’t seen him in years, but he was always a good friend.


  2. herm August 23rd, 2010 at 9:28 AM

    didn’t he alos discover Jeff Stryker?


  3. Michael Youens September 8th, 2010 at 11:25 PM

    OMG! Two Handfuls was the very first VHS porn I ever bought! It cost me $90 and was my favorite film by John Summers. During my time at Falcon Studios I was able to meet John and tell him how much I enjoyed his films and pay him the praise he deserved. He was thankful and surprisingly bashful of my compliments. So, sad to see another true legend pass into gay porn history.


Leave a Reply