Candida Royalle (1950-2015)
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A pornographic actress and producer/director of erotica for women, Candida Royalle was born as Candice Marion Vadala in Brooklyn, New York. Royalle graduated from the High School of Art and Design in New York City and attended Parsons School of Design. She moved to California and in 1975 began her career in pornographic films, appearing in about 25 productions before retiring in 1980. In 1984, with Lauren Niemi, she founded Femme Productions with the goal of producing erotica based on female desire as well as films for couples to enjoy together. Her husband, Per Sjosted, produced films for Femme. In response to the AIDS epidemic, Royalle advocated the use of safe sex practices in her films, in contrast to much of the adult entertainment industry. Royalle was a founder of Feminists for Free Expression, a sex-positive organization opposed to censorship. In 1983 she was also one of the founders, along with Veronica Hart, Annie Sprinkle, Veronica Vera, and Gloria Leonard, of Club 90, a support group for actresses in erotic films. In 1989 she signed the Post Porn Modernist Manifesto, a statement embracing sex-positivism. A member of the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors and Therapists, Royalle lectured widely at conferences and institutions including the World Congress on Sexology and the Smithsonian Institution. She was the author of How to Tell a Naked Man What to Do (2004).