Candida Royalle Kickstarting New Film

Famed Feminist Porn Pioneer Will Tell Her Own Intimate Story, and Seek Her Absent Mother, in Documentary “While You Were Gone”

(L to R: Annie Sprinkle, Gloria Leonard, Veronica Vera, Candida Royalle, Veronica Hart). Photo courtesy Annie Sprinkle

(L to R: Annie Sprinkle, Gloria Leonard, Veronica Vera, Candida Royalle, Veronica Hart). Photo courtesy Annie Sprinkle

While Candice’s mother was gone, the young girl who would become Candida Royalle grew up, grappled with sexuality and sexiness during a time of great cultural change, became a performer, made some porn, and then morphed into the feminist porn pioneer we know today: founder of Femme Productions, innovative director and sex toy designer, sought-after public speaker and mentor to a younger generation of sex-positive feminist filmmakers. Until now, few knew that Candida had a gripping, deeply moving secret past: that of a little girl abandoned by her mother. Now she is gearing up to make a film about it, one which will document her life and influences on feminism and the adult industry, but also document her search for her mother.

As her Kickstarter campaign page puts it:

“Abandoned by her mother at a young age and raised in unusual circumstances, she was at the heart of these big moments, cultural shifts, who chose a path not many would… and then found a way to change her story… who fought for every inch of her success, who faced cancer head-on… and through all that, came to THIS place… this point where she’s ready to tell her own story in a way we’ve never imagined… through the search for a mother she never knew… but is it too late?”

Candida doesn’t know where her mother went or if she’s still living, but she wants to find out. Learn more about this extraordinary project at her Kickstarter page, and if you want to support it, please do so NOW: there are fewer than 48 hours left to fund the film!


Dr. Carol Queen

Carol Queen has a PhD in sexology; she calls herself a "cultural sexologist" because her earlier academic degree is in sociology: while she addresses individual issues and couple's sexual concerns, her overarching interest is in cultural issues (gender, shame, access to education, etc.). Queen has worked at Good Vibrations, the woman-founded sexuality company based in San Francisco that turned 35 years old in 2012, since 1990. Her current position is Staff Sexologist and Good Vibrations Historian; her roles include representing the company to the press and the public; overseeing educational programming for staff and others; and scripting/hosting a line of sex education videos, the Pleasure-Ed series, for GV’s sister company Good Releasing. She also curates the company's Antique Vibrator Museum. She is also the founding director of the Center for Sex & Culture, a non-profit sex ed and arts center San Francisco, and is a frequent lecturer at colleges, universities, and community-based organizations. Her dozen books include a Lambda Literary Award winner, PoMoSexuals, and Real Live Nude Girl: Chronicles of Sex-Positive Culture, which are used as texts in some college classes. She blogs at the Good Vibes Magazine and at SFGate's City Brights bloggers page and contributes to the Boston Dig. For more about her at

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