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Wicked Pictures and Vivid Entertainment suspend production after porn performer tests positive for HIV [Updated]

October 12, 2010 |  6:26 pm

Adult film star Kaylani Lei, right, and fellow actress Stormy Daniels were at the Wicked Pictures booth during Erotica LA 2009 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, where they posed for photos with their fans. Credit: Cristina House/For The Times
Wicked Pictures officials said Tuesday that they have suspended film production at their Canoga Park-based operation as a precaution following the announcement that an adult film performer has tested positive for HIV.

[Updated at 6:30 p.m.: Officials with Vivid Entertainment, another porn production company based in Van Nuys, said they also have ceased filming until a clearer picture emerges of the possible implications of the new case.

"When Vivid was first made aware that a performer had tested positive for HIV we immediately suspended production," Steven Hirsch, Vivid's co-founder, said in statement to The Times. "We did this as a precaution and will continue to monitor the situation. AIM Healthcare acted appropriately to quarantine all adult talent who may have been exposed. We will wait for all of the facts to emerge before we resume production."]

The porn production companies, both well-known in the industry, were the first to announce a shift as a result of the positive test result confirmed Tuesday by the Adult Industry Medical Healthcare Foundation, known as AIM.

"Even though Wicked is condoms-mandatory, we have postponed our upcoming productions to give AIM a chance to create a comprehensive quarantine list," company officials said in a statement to The Times. "Thanks to the continued efforts of AIM the entire industry was all made aware of this possible threat on the same day."

A 2004 HIV outbreak in the San Fernando Valley-based porn industry shut down production for a month.

In that case, also detected through testing at the AIM clinic, more than 30 companies voluntarily stopped filming to wait for results on dozens of adult performers who had engaged in sex scenes with a male porn star and three actresses who tested HIV positive.

The latest case involves an unidentified adult-film performer who tested positive at AIM's Sherman Oaks clinic, which has served the porn industry for years.

"We do have a confirmed adult-industry performer who tested positive for HIV. We are quarantining and testing all exposed partners to the individual who tested positive for HIV," said Jennifer Miller, HIV/STD counselor at the clinic.

Miller would not say the gender of the person, what companies he or she worked for, when the person was tested or whether AIM had notified state and county health officials.

"We’re doing what we can to notify the individuals involved," Miller said.

The positive HIV test is the first reported since last year when an adult-film actress, who industry officials said had rarely worked, was infected with the virus. No one else in the industry was infected as a result.

-- Molly Hennessy-Fiske

Photo: Adult film stars Kaylani Lei, right, and Stormy Daniels were at the Wicked Pictures booth during Erotica L.A. 2009 at the Los Angeles Convention Center, where they posed for photos with fans. Credit: Cristina House / For The Times


Darrenjames

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