Interview: Sarah Vandella Discusses Life and Career in The Adult Industry
With nearly thirteen years in the industry along with countless DVD and magazine covers and award nominations to her credit, including NightMoves 2018 Best Female Performer, Sarah Vandella has firmly established herself as one of the most successful performers in adult entertainment. A testament not only to her renowned (and obvious) sexual prowess, but also for the tenacity and determination she has as a strong and independent woman. For Vandella, sex is more than just something to share with fans and adult viewers. It’s something for herself.
When she’s not filming or working on her website, the beautiful actress can be found traveling, hiking, performing yoga or attending concerts. Her musical interests are as varied and plentiful as her sexual preferences. Everything from the British Invasion and bands like The Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin and The Who, to legendary artists like Janis Joplin and, more recently, 90s rock, metal and blues legend, Joe Bonamassa.
I recently spoke with Vandella about her work and much more in this exclusive new interview.
How did your career as an adult entertainer begin?
Sarah Vandella: I was always sexually curious but quite shy growing up. And although I did a few things here and there, I didn’t really blossom into my sexuality until I was in my early twenties. During that time I had been going to school and working retail and secretarial jobs. I was dissatisfied and wanted something more. So I started working at an adult video shop and that really helped get me out of my shell. I used that experience to familiarize myself with adult novelties and videos. Once I was comfortable I took the next step and started dancing at a little club on Long Island, New York. That’s what led me to wanting to pursue a career in entertainment and being an independent woman in charge of my own sexuality.
What made you decide to make the transition into adult films?
SV: I was watching a reality show about legal brothels and thought it looked like an amazing place for a young woman who wanted to do it the right way; safely, legally and with security., I started doing research and was introduced to a place in southern Nevada called Sheri’s Ranch. While I was there I met Carmella Bing who, at the time, was a huge porn star. She took me under her wing and invited me to L.A. to watch her film. A few weeks later, I was filming my very first scenes and have been doing it ever since.
What are your thoughts on people who seem to be uptight about porn but are secretly curious?
SV: I’m always fascinated by people who will go out of their way to watch and go to our websites but, in the real world, will shame us and sell us short. It’s a shame that people put sex workers in a shameful category as drug addicts or people with no real purpose or drive or goal. They don’t understand there’s a lot more to us. We’re educated young women and men. A lot of us are in this industry for a short time and a reason and others for a lifelong season. Sure, there are elements in the business that are darker than others but you’ll find that in any industry. As long as you’re honest with yourself and are smart with your money and brand you can do anything you set your mind to. All you can do is try to educate people. At the end of the day, give someone a chance before you judge them.
What’s a typical day-in-the-life of an adult film star?
SV: It depends on what kind of scene it is. If it’s studio work for a feature movie then it’s usually a long day on set with everything broken down. You arrive on set; you do your paperwork and you show your co-star your tests. Then you’ll go through wardrobe and do a series of photographs. Afterwards the director will usually come in and prep you for the scene and let you know your dialogue points and frame you. Then there’s about fifteen or so minutes of dialogue before they cut, and then you’ll pick up from the cut point and go right into the sex.
What has been the biggest challenge for you at this point of your career?
SV: Right now it’s dealing with imposters who are stealing my photos and catfishing good, hardworking people. I recently researched myself online and thirty profiles came up. None of them were me. What’s sad is that every week I get new subscribers to my website and four out of ten of them will tell me they had been talking to someone who was using my photos. It just breaks my heart. That’s why I try to keep a public service announcement telling people that I’m not on sites like Hangouts, Tinder or Facebook. The only place you can find me are on my fan platforms OnlyFans and SextPanther. I’m also have my official Twitter and Instagram.
Are there any projects you’re currently working on right now?
SV: When I’m not filming for other studios I’m working on my personal website, which is the best way to communicate with me and see all my newer scenes. It’s updated daily and at a very fair price. I’ll also be feature dancing in Las Vegas at the Sapphire on Friday, April 3rd. It’s very exciting!
You’ve recently spent some time at The Mustang Ranch. To someone unfamiliar with what goes on at a legal brothel how would you describe it?
SV: The best way to explain it is that it’s about the human connection, which is a healing and beautiful thing. It’s not just sex for money. Sure, there’s physical contact, but there’s so much more that we provide. There are people from all walks of life that come to the ranch for all different reasons. Maybe it’s a gentleman who has ED issues or has just had surgery and wants to see if it still works. Maybe they’re single or a little bit older and may simply enjoy a woman’s company. Some of the guys might just want someone to hug and cuddle them and feel that human touch. There’s nothing more honest. It’s all about the experience and companionship. The owners of the ranch are amazing people who do a lot for the community. They encourage us to be independent contractors while still maintaining a respectful, ladylike decorum. It’s a sacred place for me.
What’s the biggest thing you’ve learned about the industry?
SV: One thing I’ve learned is that you should never do anything on camera that you don’t want to do, and that it’s ok to say no or to change your mind, even when you’re on set and already rolling. Real fans want to see what you love to do and not something you’re expected to.
What excites you the most about this next phase of your career?
SV: I’m excited about continuing to expand my website and having the direct, one on one contact with my fans. That was always my objective getting into this business. The industry is moving into a content creating space for performers where we’re in charge of what we want to put out while still performing for other studios. I’m looking forward to seeing where that’s going to go.