Smothers Brother's son is porn star
Dick Smothers Jr. wants to be 'Orson Welles of porn'
LOS ANGELES, California (Reuters) -- They say the apple doesn't fall far from the tree, but the eldest son of veteran humorist Dick Smothers of the Smothers Brothers says his life's ambition is to become "the Orson Welles of porn."
Late last year, Dick Smothers Jr., 38, shocked his father by embarking on a career path that so far has included acting in several porn films, developing a Web-based X-rated game show and launching an adult entertainment Web site.
In fact, the younger Smothers, a self-professed exhibitionist who says he has "an incredibly overactive libido," made his porno film debut as the star of an adult movie titled "Bad Influence," playing the Dustin Hoffman-inspired role in an X-rated send-up to "The Graduate."
Since then, he said, he has done sexual performances in three other films and dialogue-only roles in three others.
"The acting part of it is obviously what draws the most attention and piques the public's interest most. And to be perfectly honest, I also enjoy it," he told Reuters in a telephone interview. "But my real goal here is to build myself into a recognized, full-spectrum adult entertainer and entrepreneur."
And, capitalizing on the Smothers name, the onetime sales executive for an office products manufacturer wants to expand his involvement in porn films to the entire creative process.
"What I really want to do is become the Orson Welles of porn, not only performing in these films, but writing, directing and doing the music," said Smothers, who has put his rock band project, called lectrikDik, on hold while he focuses on his new adult entertainment ventures.
'Wait a minute. That's my name'
Of course, his father, renowned as the bass-playing, straight-laced half of the Smothers Brothers comedy duo, was stunned at first. "I think he told me after the fact," Dick Smothers Sr., 64, recalled in a separate interview. "My first reaction was, 'What name are you going to use?' ... He says he's going to use his name, and I said, 'Wait a minute. That's my name. I had it first.' "
The elder Smothers stressed he does not condone his son's current career path but doesn't condemn him either. He said his son has always been a firebrand and has tried to break into show business for a long time.
Dick Jr., the second of six children and the eldest son from his father's first marriage, even appeared once with his old rock band on a short-lived revival of the Smothers Brothers' TV variety show.
"You look at someone who's been working hard at trying to make it for 21 years or so. This is the first acknowledgment of him being viable," said Smothers Sr. "Now he's really pleased that he's doing something that's causing me a lot of consternation. He's ringing my bell. It's 'Dad, I'm here, and like it or not, I'm not going away.' If that gets him somewhere, good. Fine. But I'm not going to make any judgments about it."
Attention for the family
News of Dick Jr.'s X-rated aspirations comes as his father and uncle, Tommy Smothers, are enjoying renewed attention on tour with their comedy act, playing about 100 dates a year.
They also are promoting the recent release of a DVD documentary titled "Smothered," the story how their political satire and embrace of the 1960s peace movement led to the demise of their pioneering variety show on CBS.
The younger Smothers said he understands the discomfort of his father, a devout Christian who also has always been an outspoken champion of free expression.
If it's any consolation to dad, Dick Jr. said he has no interest in so-called "gonzo porn" -- the more extreme realm of the business -- preferring to stick with "couples-oriented" productions that sometimes make it onto cable TV. He added that his Web site comes with "the most complete and thorough protections built in" to keep away minors.
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