Mia Khalifa reveals that she regrets joining the porn industry

In an interview with BBC's Hardtalk, the former adult actress talks about how she's trying to escape her past


By Cutacut Editorial Team

KARACHI: After having worked in the porn industry for only three months of her life, Mia Khalifa is still one of the most well known adult stars of her generation. Her videos are viewed by millions around the world, and she rose to prominence due to a controversial video in which she donned a heard scarf while performing sex acts.

The former adult actress has spoken out to BBC Hardtalk’s Stephen Sackur in an interview where she regrets her choices, claiming that she made ‘terrible decisions’ as a 21 year old girl. “I don’t think low self esteem discriminates against anyone. It doesn’t matter if you come from a great family or a not so great background.” Khalifa revealed that she struggled with her weight for many years and never felt worthy of male attention. After graduation, Khalifa says she lost all the weight and started to get a lot of attention and compliments from men, and when she did, she “did not want that to go away.”

How it all began

During that time, she was spotted by someone on the streets who first approached her by complimenting her and telling her how beautiful she was. He then suggested that she¬†tried her hand at nude modelling. When she toured the studio in Miami, she saw that it was very ‘respectable’ and ‘clean’. “It was nothing dodgy or anything that made me uncomfortable.”

Sackur asks her if her 21-year-old self felt like a victim? “I feel like she didn’t have the tools to identify that she was being taken advantage of. Or that what she was being told were all lies. Maybe not so much as lies but you know, trying to manipulate me into doing what they wanted to do. I don’t really see myself as a victim, I don’t like that word. I did make my own decisions, even though they were terrible decisions,” she answers.

She further reveals that adult stars have very little agency when it comes to the content of the films. “Very little. Other than saying yes or no to one outfit or the other. Very little say in what was filmed. The theme of it, the content, where it’s filmed.” Sackur asks if she was asked to perform a sex act that she absolutely did not want to do, she answered “no they can’t force you.”

The rise to stardom

The notorious video, in which the former adult actress wore a hijab while performing sex acts, made Khalifa become one of the most famous faces in the whole world. When she was asked by the producers to do the film, Khalifa claims that she verbatim told her producers, “you guys are going to get me killed.” And they just laughed at her in return.

She wasn’t able to say no to them because of intimidation. “They’re not going to force you to have sex. At that point it would be rape. I was still scared. Have you ever been scared or nervous to speak up when you’re at a restaurant and your food ‘s not right. I was intimidated.” She claims it’s the same when you’re signing a contract because the CEO and the producers of the company are all sitting staring at you as you read the contract and at that point, one’s mind can go blank.

After the release of the video, Mia Khalifa’s world shattered. She agreed to do porn because she thought nobody would find out about it. But soon after that video’s release. She started getting death threats from ISIS sympathizers. She had to move out of her apartment because someone shared a screenshot of her home’s location on google maps and she felt very unsafe. In this entire time, the then 21-year-old did not have any security or legal representation. She had also been disowned by her parents so she did not have any family support either. Soon after, she resigned.

Escaping her past

However what comes across in the interview is that a three-month stint will hound her for life. Mia Khalifa talks about how her name isn’t google friendly because the first thing that pops up anytime somebody googles her name are the videos and they will stay on the Internet forever. Also, while the producers are still making millions of dollars on those videos, all Khalifa made from the deal was $12,000. She reveals that every contract works this way and that it is very exploitative.

 

 

 

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