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21 Things You Need To Know About Porn Star James Deen

Adult film superstar James Deen spoke to BuzzFeed at the AVN Adult Entertainment Expo about his career in porn.

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1. He knew porn was his calling early on. "I don't specifically remember my conscious thoughts, but it was in kindergarten," he said.

2. And the inspiration for his porn career? A magazine. "So I would walk home on this trail in kindergarten, and there was, like, a porno magazine opened up and I saw it, and that was pretty much, that would be the defining moment."

3. Unsurprisingly, Deen says he loves his job. "My job is something I've always aspired to do and wanted to do, and I get to make cool stuff, and kind of do whatever I want."

4. Deen says he loves being his own boss. "I have it set up in a way where I can produce movies I want to produce, and I can perform the way I want to perform, and do all these things that I want to do. Which is pretty awesome," he said.

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5. Deen says he thinks the biggest problem facing the adult industry is perception. "I mean, the stigma, the social stigma in adult films is tough," he said. "You end up with a lot of people that have their minds already made up before they happen."

6. Two stereotypes stand out, he said: "People think that everyone is mentally damaged, or depraved."

7. But that can change, according to Deen. "It would be nice to educate people in a better way to reduce some of those stereotypes about people in the industry," he said.

8. And adult entertainers don't receive the respect they deserve, Deen says. "The fact that people treat performers like children when we're actually not is a negative thing," he said.

9. And Deen stressed the autonomy of people in his industry. "We are adults; you need to be an adult to get into the adult film industry. You can't just show up when you're not making your own decisions."

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10. Deen says he was rebellious as a youth. "When I was a kid I would smoke cigarettes, lots of cigarettes, and I always had leather jackets," he said.

11. And yes, this led to the birth of his nickname. "People started calling me James Dean and it carried over to when I went back to school," he said.

12. He's grateful it led to it being his stage name. "It was great accidental branding, because you know it helps people associate it with the iconic rebel attitude," Deen said.

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13. Outside of porn, Deen has a huge interest in food and produces his own culinary videos for his blog.

14. In high school he included that passion in his career goals. "I was talking to the guidance counselor and I was talking about what I want to do, and told him I like to eat, sleep, and fuck," he said.

15. And while his career is in porn, that spark is still there. "It's something I've always loved, so now that as a hobby I can be a goofball and do things like eat food, and write reviews, and be silly, and make videos, I like doing it," Deen said.

16. Deen said if he had to choose between food and sex he would pick food. "I'd die if I didn't eat food. I would die," he said. "I like to live."

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17. He's had struggles with social anxiety. "Meeting people and the idea of people coming to talk to me, it was just really hard," Deen said.

18. He says he tries to tackle this anxiety head-on. "I try to put myself in situations that make me uncomfortable, and deal with the coping mechanisms that I've learned over the years to reduce my panic, and learn from it, and get better and more comfortable," he said.

19. He's says through hosting functions and going to events he's learning to deal with it. "So essentially practice makes perfect over time," Deen said.

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20. He has a simple life mantra: "Just be you and don't worry about the rules, and always be true to yourself."

21. And according to Deen, his best work is yet to come. "I think that I can always grow, and I haven't made my best movie," he said. "I'm trying to exceed what I've done in the past and do better."