17 Porn Stars With Acting Chops

It’s no secret that most people don’t watch porn for the plot, let alone the thespian capabilities of its stars. As long as you look good fucking on camera, it’s not a big deal if you can’t deliver a line convincingly or construct a believable persona for your character. But every now and then there comes a porn star who makes us actually want to watch the plot from beginning to end. Here’s my picks for the top porn stars with serious acting chops.

Carter Cruise

It was no surprise to me when this year’s Best New Starlet also nabbed the Best Actress trophy at this year’s AVN Awards, making Carter Cruise only the second star to do so since Jenna Jameson in 1996. Last year’s Second Chances, about a college senior unexpectedly finding love after a humiliating freshman year, was the perfect showcase for Cruise, who has previous theater experience. The rest of the cast also shines under the direction of Jackie St. James and Eddie Powell, including best friend Jessa Rhodes,  the adorably hapless Logan Pierce, and scheming sorority sister Allie Haze.

Steven St. Croix

Everyone’s favorite daddy has been AVN’s Best Actor more times than I care to count, starting with 1995’s Chinatown and continuing with last year’s Wetwork. He nails just about everything that he does, from the deadly seriousness of Fluid 3, to his hilarious turn as a mob boss in Nothin’ But Trouble.

Asa Akira

Wicked contract girl Asa Akira is always charming when given a chance to act. She has a fantastic sense of humor about it, playing her parts with a smirking glee. Definitely check out last year’s hooker-with-a-heart-of-gold vehicle Holly… Would.

Dawayne Dane

This guy hasn’t been in many pornos, but his turn as Carlton Banks in the Official Fresh Prince of Bel Air Parody is so dead on that it amazes me that we don’t see him more often. If you can get past the non-existent production values, it’s really worth your time.

Magdalene St. Michaels

This MILF is a mainstay at Girlfriends Films, and for good reason. She has an extensive acting background, and has even appeared in mainstream films. And it shows! She first caught my attention in Mother Exchange 2, where she completely wins over Giovanni Francesco.

Skin Diamond

The lovely and kinky Skin Diamond is an expert at toeing the line between pure camp and serious artistry. For the former, check out her tribute to Michonne in The Walking Dead – A Hardcore Parody. If the latter is more your game, Skin is excellent in last year’s twisted drama Control.

Evan Stone

A legend in the industry, Evan Stone is known for not taking himself too seriously and setting a hilarious goofball tone in modern classics like Pirates and Pirates 2 – Stagnetti’s Revenge. He also knows when to hold back, like his heartbreaking turn as a sick, both spiritually and physically, father in Daddy’s Girls.

Dana Vespoli

Dana Vespoli is my favorite pornstar, not least of all because of her convincing, and oftentimes creepy, acting roles. Even when she’s not fucking on camera, she still often appears on screen in non-sex roles, helping to flesh out the other characters and the plot. Check her out in the recently released The Turning, as well as in A Thing of Beauty, Vespoli’s own adaptation of Faust.

Mickey Mod

It really says something about your chops when you can carry a porno whole movie without taking your dick out! Mickey Mod is a mainstay of the fetish world, and I absolutely adored him in the kinky softcore feature The Punished Coed.

India Summer

As one of the most popular (and all natural!) MILFs working today, India Summer consistently wins over audiences with both her acting and sex scenes. Her delivery has an effortless grace that draws us in, even when she’s playing wicked stepmothers and other unlikable broads. Audiences raved about the popular Marriage 2.0, and I loved Summer alongside Maddy O’Reilly and Steven St. Croix in The Sexual Liberation of Anna Lee.

Tommy Pistol

He’s usually cracking us up in screwball comedies like Killer Kleavage From Outer Space, but sometimes Tommy Pistol manages to scare the shit out of us and show some real menace, like in last year’s trippy Bubble Gum Girls.

Mercedes Carrera

Mercedes Carrera is another star of The Turning, but she’s also weird and hilarious in B. Skow’s In The Flesh, not to mention the way that she amps up her fear and shame in the wonderfully creepy My Evil Stepson 2.

Misty Stone

The stunning Misty Stone gives Vivica A. Fox a serious run for her money in Digital Playground’s Kill Bill – A XXX Parody. She also kills it in this year’s Magic Mike XXXL: A Hardcore Parody as the dancers’ new boss. Misty has an undeniable power and forcefulness to her performances, as well as an ease to the delivery of her lines.

Nat Turnher

Nat Turnher is a star who doesn’t get nearly enough acting or romantic roles. He’s super handsome and wonderfully plays suave sweethearts. He steals the show from Sean Michaels in Family Secrets – Tales Of Victorian Lust and livens up the old plumber trope alongside Jodi Taylor in Belladonna’s Butthole Whores 4.

Amber Rayne

Amber Rayne was touring with a musical theater troupe when her contract ran out, leaving her stranded in LA. Sick of the typical Hollywood hustle, but still wanting to perform, she took the plunge into the adult industry. She gets to show off her thespian history in the campy romp The Pornographer from Wicked, and she rocks in in Wanted,  a Western feature from director Stormy Daniels.

Xander Corvus

Xander is great at playing lovable (and not so lovable) bad boys, and has a great, naturalistic acting style. Everyone in multiple award winner Wasteland deserves a spot on this list, including Lily LaBeau, but my shoutout is going to Xander for this one.

Jesse Jane

She might have the stereotypical blonde bimbo pornstar look, but there’s a good reason why Jesse Jane got lead roles in so many Digital Playgrounds blockbuster features. You can’t help but love the bubbly joy with which she tackles her roles, especially in the Pirates series and Code Of Honor.

Did I forget any of your favorites? Yell at me in the comments and let me know!

Judy Hologram forgot one of her lines in the third grade play. You can follow her on Twitter @JudyHologram and the rest of us @HotMoviesForHer.

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