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PREACH IT! The real deal behind celebrity sex tapes [poll]

May 18, 2010 |  2:16 pm
Wilkinson-web Hey, lookit: Now that we have cover art of the Kendra Wilkinson sex tape, we have a reason to write about sex tapes today. God bless the visual arts.

Wilkinson is a reality-TV mainstay and former Playboy housemate now married to Hank Baskett, an NFL athlete who makes her pray before meals. Wilkinson, now 24, and Baskett are married and have a little baby. But before all that wholesomeness, Wilkinson, like so many 18-year-olds who are too beautiful for their own good, made a private sex tape with some dude.

Vivid Entertainment has plans to release said sex tape -- apparently against Wilkinson’s horrified will -- once some unspecified “legal issues” have been worked out. Wilkinson reportedly has been trying to block release of the tape; according to Life & Style, Wilkinson’s husband is "totally upset and embarrassed," and worried that the footage could sack his career.

Right about now is when we’re all supposed to take to the Twittersphere and cluck something about that poor, exploited Kendra. Except, as it turns out, the story has blossomed into an excellent illustration of how celebrity sex tape deals really work. For one, Radar has reported, Wilkinson -- before she tried to block the tape -- tried mighty hard to take it public, via her former manager.

Kevin Blatt, a celebrity sex-tape broker, told Radar: "I deal with a lot of unsavory people ... 

... in my industry and for someone to approach me and say Kendra has a tape and is willing to sign off on it while she was living at the mansion, I thought, 'No way is this true.' But in this case it was!"

And it’s all too common, actually. I interviewed the head of a sex-tape distribution outfit once, and he told me that not only do stars often sign off on sex tapes, they also occasionally broker the deals personally. In his office. Sometimes the less famous partners in the sex tapes approach dealers themselves. More often, sex-tape deals are brokered through celebrity agents, and it’s all on the up and up, from the very beginning. Normally, celebrities and distributors enter into a partnership-style agreement. The distributor gives the star an advance against sales, and then split the rest of the revenue.

As for how much money we’re talking? Usually, the mere five figures, not six -- far from the salary a star might get from a legitimate TV or movie deal. Still, cry not for the celebrity sex-tape stars. They’re a lot less exploited than they’d have you believe.

-- Leslie Gornstein

Photo: Hank Baskett and Kendra Wilkinson get comfortable at the world premiere of "A Nightmare on Elm Street" in Hollywood on April 27. Credit: Gabriel Bouys / AFP / Getty Images.

Related posts from the Ministry of Gossip's naughty, naughty archives:

Singer Mindy McCready unaware of sex tape's release, her attorney says 

Country singer Mindy McCready talks about Roger Clemens in new sex tape 

Porn producer offers 'Octomom' Nadya Suleman help with the mortgage 

Gary Coleman pleads guilty after declaring zero supply of (but apparent demand for?) nude photos of himself

And in the spirit of the Miss USA pageant ...

Carrie Prejean, solo: 'It was me in the tape'

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