Birth name Marina Ann Hantzis
Known pseudonyms Anna Karina
Date of Birth March 14, 1988
Place of Birth Sacramento, California, USA
Breast Size 2
Eye Color Brown
Hair Color Brunette
Body shape 81-66-79
Career Start Date 2006
Sasha Grey, whose real name is Marina Ann Hantzis, was born March 14, 1988 in Sacramento, California to a family of mechanics of Greek-American descent. Has Greek, Irish, English and Polish roots. The girl’s parents divorced when she was 5 years old; she was subsequently raised by her mother, who remarried in 2000. Marina’s family moved to the southern United States with her new stepfather. At school she briefly went to the theater club. The girl did not get along with her foster father and, when she was 16, told her mother that she was going to leave home, but this did not happen: her mother took her along with the other children and returned with them to Sacramento. Marina attended four different schools and received her high school education in May 2005.
In the fall of that year, she enrolled in a part-time college (with a shortened two-year course of study), where she took classes in film, dance, and acting. In March 2006, she worked at a diner where she saved $7,000 for a trip to Los Angeles.
Sasha Grey A career in pornographic films
In April 2006, Marina arrived in Los Angeles with the firm intention of pursuing a career as a porn actress. Later she explained her absolute confidence in her choice of profession by the fact that from a young age she showed a consistent interest in sexuality and pornography (at the age of eleven in 1999 she started watching porn), but over time she became disappointed in the range of products that the porn market could offer: “I find most XXX movies boring and not exciting – neither physically nor visually. I want to be someone who satisfies everyone’s fantasies. Through the Internet, she met entrepreneur Mark Spiegler, who agreed to represent her. She had originally chosen the pseudonym Anna Karina after a famous French actress, but her agent advised her to change it. As a new stage name she took the name Sasha after Sasha Konietzko, the vocalist of KMFDM, and the last name Grey, after the scale of sexual orientation, created by American biologist Alfred Kinsey, which is expressed in shades of gray. According to another version, the pseudonym Grey was taken after a character from Oscar Wilde’s novel “Dorian Gray”: “…she chose it because of Dorian’s insatiable appetite for pleasure, and grey is the color of clouds, a word that evokes a curtain, mystery, distance”.
When one of Spiegler’s actresses declined to star in John Stagliano’s The Fashionistas 2 because of illness, Sasha Grey was invited to take her place. Her first scene in a porn movie was an orgy with Rocco Siffredi. Later in her interviews Sasha confessed that she has very good memories of the first film, although she does not remember in what order the men were: “Your thoughts are somewhere far away, everything is under control, but you are lost somewhere. It’s a wonderful feeling, I adore it.” As Rocco Siffredi himself recounted, he was taken aback by Sasha’s request to kick her in the stomach while filming a blowjob scene “for spice.” Sasha Grey has repeatedly stated in interviews that she loves to be lightly strangled, hit, spanked, tugged by her hair: “…I just like it, you know…”. She claims to have an orgasm in about 75 percent of the scenes she appears in. Just six weeks after her debut, she was already finding the role of exhibitionist pleasurable. “I love the feeling I get when I’m in front of the camera and someone is watching me have sex,” she confessed.
Two and a half months after her eighteenth birthday, Sasha has starred in 33 adult films. The Los Angeles Magazine journalist describes the actress’ daily preparations for filming: “Every night before filming she would stash in her purse various enemas, shower heads, distilled water, lubricant, a dildo, a washcloth, disinfectant, mouthwash, toothbrush, toothpaste, shower gel, hand sanitizer, comb, lotion and Orbit chewing gum. If an anal scene was planned, Sasha ate a light lunch accompanied by an enema.
For some reason people think I’m a victim, but I’m not. I do everything consciously and voluntarily. I don’t do drugs. I like my job. I’m willing to accept the opportunities and challenges of fate that I have as a woman, a porn star and an artist.
Nearly six months after Sasha Grey began her career as an adult film actress, she was prophesied to have a big future in the industry and was being called the new Jenna Jameson. Just under a year after she began filming, Sasha Grey won awards for Best Threesome Scene and Best Group Sex Scene – Video at the AVN Adult Movie Awards. That same year she was nominated for Best New Starlet, but lost to Naomi Russell. In July 2007 Sasha Grey was named “Pet of the Month” by Penthouse magazine, for which famous photographer Terry Richardson held a photo shoot with Sasha. In 2008 Sasha became the youngest female performer to receive the AVN Female Performer of the Year award. The same year she received the Best Oral Sex Scene award. In 2010, she received awards for Best Anal Sex Scene, Best Oral Sex Scene and The Jenna Jameson Crossover Star of the Year.
In February 2007 Sasha appeared on The Tyra Banks Show about teenagers in the porn industry. The actress herself was extremely unhappy with the final version of the show (heavily edited) where she appeared before the audience as a victim.
In the December 2008 issue of Rolling Stone magazine, Sasha Grey was listed as “Hot Pornstar” in the Hot Issue. In March 2008, Grey announced the creation of LA Factory Girls, an agency that would represent her own interests in the business as well as help aspiring actresses.
As of December 2010, Sasha Grey had starred in nearly three hundred films, which included lesbian scenes (including strapons), BDSM, group sex, masturbation, squirting and “golden shower,” among other things. According to Gray, softcore (light porn) is only for “housewives who are sitting on Valium.” “She can quickly list all her taboos,” the Rolling Stone reporter wrote, “simulated rape, vaginal ejaculation, breast spanking, male porn actors’ fingers, feces, animals, children — which means everything else is generally acceptable. Anthony Scott, a leading film critic for The New York Times, called her career in porn “remarkable both for the extremity of what she does and the unusual degree of intellectual seriousness with which she does it.”
In a 2009 interview with Rolling Stone magazine, Sasha claimed that she had only had six men in her life, while in the movies she had contact with 60 partners.
On April 8, 2011 Sasha Grey announced the end of her career as a porn star on her Facebook page:
It has become quite obvious that my time in the adult film industry as an actress has come to an end. But don’t worry, Jesus didn’t appear to me. One thing I can say for sure so far: I’m proud that I have no regrets about what happened. I really feel that as a performer, I’ve said all I can say. I’ve worked with some of the best professionals in the adult industry during that time, and I will always treasure the relationships and friendships we’ve formed over time. It’s just that now, while I’m still on top of my game, it’s the perfect time for me to move on. Life sometimes takes us down paths and roads we never imagined.
Sasha Grey Modeling Career
Sascha Grey started her modelling career by working with The Smashing Pumpkins, getting her picture taken for the cover of the album “Zeitgeist” (2007) and later appearing in their music video for “Superchrist”. Sasha also appeared in the music video of “Birthday Girl” by The Roots.
Sasha was later invited to work as a model by French fashion designer Max Azria. Sasha also modeled for an international advertising campaign for the Italian shoe brand Forfex and American Apparel. Sasha has also modeled in Vice magazine’s anti-fashion section of Richard Kern and appeared in a three-hour feature, “Shot by Kern”.
In January 2010, Grey starred in an ad for PETA. The ad poster featuring her called for the sterilization of pets in order to control their birth rate.
In October 2010, Grey appeared on the cover of the American edition of Playboy. The photo shoot was done by one of the magazine’s most famous photographers, Steven Wajda.
Sasha Grey Acting Career
Sasha Grey appeared in a cameo in the parody series Porn for the Whole Family with James Gan. Also in 2009, Sasha starred in Zed Filmworks’ low-budget horror comedy film Smash Cut. The film tells the story of a crazy director who, trying to make the perfect horror movie, killed people to use their organs and blood in his movies. Sasha Grey plays the role of a reporter who investigates a missing persons case and suspects the director. The film premiered on July 18, 2009 in Montreal at the Fantasia Festival.
Sasha played the role of herself in the seventh season of the series “Pretty People”, which aired on the cable channel HBO. According to the plot, she became Vince Chase’s new girlfriend. The creator of the series “Handsome” Doug Ellin admitted that he chose Grey to sort of recreate the relationship that famous actor Charlie Sheen and porn star Ginger Lynn were in in the 1990s.
In the late summer of 2010, it was reported that director Mark Pellington had begun work on his new film, I Melt With You. This is a low-budget project, one of the main roles in which Sasha Grey played. Filming began in the first half of August 2010 and took place in Northern California, in addition to Sasha, starring actors such as Carla Gugino, Thomas Jane and Rob Lowe. The film is also notable because it was shot entirely on a Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera. The film premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2011.
On April 28, 2011, a film was released in Indonesia, Shrouded Corpse Shaking While Hip-Shaking, whose English title is Shrouded Corpse Bathing While Hip-Shaking, starring Sasha Grey in one of the lead roles. Although the film is an Indonesian production, Sasha will speak English. The film is produced by K2K Production, which specializes in horror and thrash films. Previously, the company gained fame only due to the fact that two of its films starred famous porn actresses Tera Patrick and Maria Ozawa.
In 2009, Sasha Grey acted as a producer of the film Modus Operandi. The main role in the film was played by Danny Trejo. In 2011, the director of the film Frankie Latina, shot his second film, in which the main role played Sasha, with whom he had already become friends while working on the first film. The film is called Skinny Dip and besides Grey, it stars Danny Trejo, Pam Grier, Michael Madsen and Brigitte Nielsen. This is an exploitation movie made in the style of 80s movies. According to the plot the main character (Grey) is raped by several guys and the whole movie she will take revenge on them, thus reminiscent by the plot of I Spit on Your Grave, made in the same genre in the late 70’s.
On August 10, 2011, the French low-budget film Life, with Sasha Grey in one of the roles, was released immediately on DVD.
Grey voiced the character Viola DeWinter in the computer game Saints Row: The Third, which hit the shelves November 15, 2011.
Sasha Grey played the title role in Oscar-winning director Steven Soderbergh’s “Call Girl.” Her character is a girl named Chelsea, who provides escort services to wealthy people. Soderbergh cast her after reading an article about Sasha in Los Angeles magazine, noting: “I think this is kind of a new kind of actress. She doesn’t fit the mold of a typical actress in the adult movie business… I’ve never heard anybody talk about the business the way she does. Journalist Scott Macaulay suggested that Grey may have been chosen for the role because of her interest in independent filmmakers such as Jean-Luc Godard, Harmony Corinne, David Gordon Green, Michelangelo Antonioni, Agnès Varda and William Klein.
In preparation for filming, Soderbergh asked Sacha to watch Godard’s “Living Your Life” and “The Mad Pierrot.” “Living Your Life,” from which Grey could learn something for her role, deals with prostitution, and “Pierrot the Mad” has some resemblance to the relationship that develops between Chelsea, her boyfriend and her clients. Gray said that Chelsea is partly like herself in her character.
The role of Sasha Grey received conflicting reviews from critics. Owen Gleiberman (Entertainment Weekly) described her as, “A real adult video star, she turns out not to be a naturally acting actress, but a real unsatisfied walking Barbie who looks like Ashley Dupre with a touch of Demi Moore. Soderbergh uses it all because of her spiritual flatness.”
A film reviewer for The New Yorker magazine called the film “sluggish” because “Sasha Grey was so immersed in herself that she completely forgot about acting.” In the pages of The Seattle Times, Moira Macdonald wondered how to tell the difference between flat, superficial acting by an inexperienced actor and a realistic portrayal by an experienced actor of a completely flat, ordinary character. “If such questions arise, the actor is probably to blame,” was the journalist’s conclusion.
Roger Ebert, on the other hand, thought that “Grey conveyed hope and disappointment flawlessly while remaining within the bounds of reason”; he particularly singled out the moment when suddenly her mask falls off and the viewer’s true feelings of her character are revealed.
Jim Hoberman noted that of all the porn actresses who have entered “normal” cinema, Grey was the first to present her own situation in an allegorical light; her onscreen self-confidence is indistinguishable from pathos. “Whether the life-worn monster is playing the role of a smarmy little slapstick, or vice versa, it’s as if one actor were playing the roles of Marlon Brando and Maria Schneider in ‘Last Tango in Paris,'” Hoberman speculates.
The best review for Grey was from Collider.com, “It’s simply amazing, it’s as if Grey was made for the role of Chelsea, even if the role doesn’t require much acting ability,” said critic Peyton Kellogg enthusiastically. – “Naturally and persuasively, Grey does not suggest that she is an actress of the so-called ‘lowbrow genre,’ on the contrary, she is quite organic and could have a future in conventional cinema.”
While promoting the film in April 2009, Gray visited Brandeis University, where she was interviewed by a Los Angeles Times blogger and answered questions from 300 students.
It’s strange to hear that people like me corrupt people by pushing them to violence. It’s the state that pushes people to violence.
From an interview with Esquire magazine
Sasha Grey Music Career
In 2008, Sascha Gray and Pablo St. Francis co-founded the industrial music band aTelecine. Gray herself described the style of music they play as “experimental psychedelic death dub”. Their first EP was called “AVigillant Carpark” and was released by the New York label Pendu Sound on seven-inch vinyl only. In a 2009 interview, Sasha Gray stated that the musicians were working on material for a full-length LP. Since then, two new members have joined the band and two LPs “…And Six Dark Hours Pass” and “A Cassette Tape Culture” have been released, both in 2010. Their first album “The Falcon and the Pod” aTelecine released on August 9, 2011. Two more albums are planned for release in the future.
Sasha’s vocals are also featured on the album Aleph at Hallucinatory Mountain by Current 93. Gray also regularly performs as a DJ in the US and Canada.
In 2011, Sasha Grey starred in the music video of American rapper Eminem. The song is called “Space Bound,” and the clip appeared on YouTube and Vevo.com on June 27.
On March 29, 2011, Sasha Grey released an art-porn-book “Neu Sex”, which can be roughly translated as “Sex in a New Way”. The book consists of photoshoots of the actress and personal, previously unpublished photos. The book is published by VICE Books.
“There are too many photographs with me whose aesthetics are beyond my control. And self-documenting allows you to capture the moment of a day or even a single second. Working in the entertainment industry, you realize – no day is the same as another, and it’s important to pay attention to everything that happens to you.
Through photographs, the book reveals the period of Sasha’s life from age 18 to 22, when she was in the porn industry. “I let my body be used as a canvas, as an instrument. It allowed me to explore myself,” states the former porn actress.
Sasha Grey Influence
The Southern California band Antagonist named one of the songs on their album World In Decline, released August 17, 2010, “Sasha Grey” after Sasha Grey. The song itself was posted online for free on July 14, 2010. Also the metal band Manic Depressive wrote a song in Sasha’s honor. The band Manflu released an EP which includes a song called “Sasha Grey”. French rock band Noriega wrote a song dedicated to Sasha. Frantic Clam also released a song with the same name. On the wave of Sasha Grey’s popularity the Russian emo band Sasha Grey was formed. Among the Russian bands, Tango Cocain dedicated their song to the porn actress.
In May 2013 she tried to repeat Vladimir Putin’s trans-Russian motor rally, which the Russian Prime Minister had done in 2010: drive the Lada Kalina from Khabarovsk to Chita. However, the car broke down in Khabarovsk. Sasha Grey had to take a plane and then a Volkswagen Polo.
Sasha Grey Awards
2006 XRCO Award New Starlet Winner
2006 XRCO Award Super Slut nomination
2006 XRCO Award Cream Dream Nominee
2007 AVN Awards Best Three-Way Sex Scene Fuck Slaves Winner
2007 AVN Awards Best Group Sex Scene (Video) Fashionistas Safado: The Challenge Winner
2007 AVN Awards Best Oral Sex Scene (Video) Oral Supremacy Nominee
2007 AVN Awards Best New Starlet – Nominee
2007 XRCO Award Female Performer of the Year Winner
2007 XRCO Award Superslut nomination
2007 XRCO Award Cream Dream Nominee
2007 XRCO Award Orgasmic Oralist Nominee
2008 AVN Awards Best All-Girl Sex Scene – Video Boundaries Nomination
2008 AVN Award Best Group Sex Scene – Video Swallow My Squirt 4 nomination
2008 AVN Award Best Oral Sex Scene (Video) Blow Me Sandwich 11 nominations
2008 AVN Award Best Three-way Sex Scene – Razordolls nomination
2008 AVN Award Best Oral Sex Scene (Video) Feeding Frenzy 9 nominations
2008 AVN Award Best Oral Sex Scene (Video) Babysitters Winner
2008 AVN Award Female Performer of the Year – Winner
2008 XRCO Award Orgasmic Oralist Nominee
2008 XRCO Award Female Performer of the Year Winner
2008 XRCO Award Mainstream Adult Media Favorite Nomination
2009 XRCO Award Orgasmic Oralist Nomination
2009 XRCO Award Female Performer of the Year Nomination
2009 XRCO Award Mainstream Adult Favorite Winner
2009 AVN Award Jenna Jameson Crossover Star of the Year Nominee
2009 AVN Award Female Performer of the Year nomination
2009 AVN Award Best Threeway Sex Scene Pirates II: Stagnetti’s Revenge Nominee
2009 AVN Award Best Oral Sex Scene Filth Cums First 3 nomination
2009 AVN Award Best All-Girl Group Sex Scene Flower’s Squirt Shower 5 nomination
2009 AVN Award Best Actress The Last Rose Nomination
2009 AVN Award Best POV Sex Scene P.O.V. Centerfolds 7 nomination
2010 AVN Award Best Anal Sex Scene Anal Cavity Search 6 nomination
2010 AVN Award Best Oral Sex Scene Throat: A Cautionary Tale 6 wins
2010 AVN Award The Jenna Jameson Crossover Star of the Year Winner
2010 XBIZ Award Crossover Star of the Year Winner
2010 XBIZ Award Crossover Star of the Year Winner
2010 XRCO Award Mainstream Adult Media Favorite Winner