||This biographical article needs additional citations for verification. (December 2009)|
12 October 1957 |
London, England, United Kingdom
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Weight||175 lb (79 kg; 12.5 st)|
|No. of adult films||39 (as a director)|
In the foreword to a book devoted to Kristen Bjorn's work, director William Higgins wrote that, "[in] the relatively brief history of hardcore gay videos, Kristen Bjorn has emerged unchallenged as the best director to date."
Bjorn was born in London, the son of a Russian mother and a British father. He was raised in Washington, D.C., where his father was stationed as a diplomat. He has a brother and two sisters. In an interview conducted in 1997, Bjorn stated that only one of his sisters knows his profession as a maker of gay erotic films.
After graduating from high school, Bjorn set out to travel widely, to places including Asia, India, and Europe. His career goal at the time was to be "a photographer for a magazine like National Geographic. I wanted to travel across the world and photograph people. I was really very interested in different cultures."
Beginning of his career in pornography
Bjorn arrived in San Francisco in 1978, where he encountered the gay community for the first time. "[I]t was all very strange to me." Encouraged by the ideal of male beauty that he found in gay erotic magazines, Bjorn took up working out and paying attention to his own physique. Around 1980, he was photographed by Fred Bisonnes for Mandate magazine. This was followed by two appearances in Falcon videos: Biker's Liberty (Falcon Studios 30, 1983) and The New Breed (Falcon Studios 32, 1983). Falcon chose the pseudonym Kristen Bjorn for him due to his resemblance to the Swedish tennis player Björn Borg.
Erotic photographer and director
In 1982, Bjorn arrived in Brazil, where he was to spend eight years, until 1990. Initially, he worked as a photographer, producing as many as 20 or 25 photo sets a month. His first video, Tropical Heatwave, appeared in 1989. This production set the pattern for the dozens more that were to follow:
- Given his interest in travel and foreign cultures, many of Bjorn’s videos feature men of clearly identifiable ethnic backgrounds and nationalities in typical surroundings. The titles of his videos are indicative of this characteristic: Carnaval in Rio (1989), Manhattan Latin (1990), Caribbean Beat (1990), A Sailor in Sydney (1990), Montreal Men (1992), The Vampire of Budapest (1995), and so forth.
- Bjorn prefers to work with amateur models rather than with porn stars. In his early films, the majority of his performers identified themselves as heterosexual.
- Bjorn places great emphasis on the quality of his photography; it usually takes him about four days to film a single scene. Consequently, his production budget is unusually high given the standards of the gay porn industry.
- Bjorn typically lives in the country in which his videos are produced. Thus, his emigration to Australia in 1990 gave rise to what he calls his "Australian trilogy" of movies; when he returned to Brazil in 1993, a number of South American-themed films followed.
- Tropical Heatwave (1989)
- Carnaval in Rio (1990)
- Island Fever (1990)
- Manhattan Latin (1991)
- Caribbean Heat (1991)
- A Sailor in Sydney (1992)
- Jackaroos (1992)
- Manly Beach (1992)
- Call of the Wild (1993)
- Montreal Men (1993)
- Jungle Heat (1994)
- Paradise Plantation (1994)
- Mystery Men (1994)
- The Caracas Adventure (1995)
- The Vampire of Budapest (1995)
- Comrades in Arms (1995)
- Hungary for Men (1996)
- A World of Men (1996)
- Gangsters at Large (1996)
- Amazon Adventure (1996)
- Manwatcher (1997)
- The Anchor Hotel (1997)
- Hot Times in Little Havana (1998)
- Thick as Thieves (1998)
- Wet Dreams 1 (1999)
- Wet Dreams 2 (1999)
- Making It with Kristen Bjorn (documentary) (1999)
- The Isle of Man (2000)
- Dreamers (2000)
- The Agony of Ecstasy (documentary) (2000)
- Men Amongst the Ruins (2001)
- Bone Island (2001)
- Crossroads of Desire (2002)
- Parashooter (2003)
- Males Tales (2003)
- Manville (2004)
- Fire Dance (2004)
- Rocks & Hard Places 1&2 (2005)
- El Rancho (2005)
- Skin Deep 1&2 (2006)
- Action! 1&2 (2007)
- Pride 1&2 (2007)
- Wild Attraction
- Executive producer (with other directors)
- Hungarians (1997)
- Moscow: The Power of Submission (2000)
- Behind the Curtain (documentary, 2000)
- Italian Style (2002)
- A Sicilian Tale (2002)
- Out in Tuscany (2003)
- Under the Big Top (2003)
- Ambassadors of the Ice (2003)
- Journey to Greece (2004)
- Legion of Vengeance (2004)
- Hangar (2004)
Awards and nominations
- 2007 Barcelona International Erotic Film Festival Heatgay Award winner - Best Film (El Rancho - Kristen Bjorn), Best Director (El Rancho - Kristen Bjorn Productions), and Best Script (El Rancho - Kristen Bjorn Productions)
- 2010 XBIZ Award nomination - Gay Studio of the Year (Kristen Bjorn Production)
||Constructs such as ibid., loc. cit. and idem are discouraged by Wikipedia's style guide for footnotes, as they are easily broken. Please improve this article by replacing them with named references (quick guide), or an abbreviated title. (March 2010)|
- The Films of Kristen Bjorn, by Jamoo. Foreword by William Higgins (Laguna Hills, Calif.: Companion Press, 1997), 9–10, at 9.
- See ibid., 15.
- Ibid., 17.
- See ibid., 19.
- See ibid., 55.
- Ibid., 74.
- "Winners of the 2007 FICEB Ninfa Awards", h.b., October 10, 2007, xstarsnews.com. Retrieved 2010-10-12.
- XBIZ Announces Finalist Nominees for 2010 XBIZ Awards, XBIZ, Wednesday, 16 December 2009
- The Films of Kristen Bjorn, by Jamoo. With a Foreword by William Higgins (Laguna Hills, Calif.: Companion Press, 1997), ISBN 978-1-889138-00-8.—This book offers a reliable account of Kristen Bjorn's life, views, and work until 1997. It consists of a series of interviews with Bjorn himself. This article is largely based on this book. Unfortunately, there does not appear to be a source that discusses Bjorn's career since then.
- Men of the World (Berlin: Bruno Gmünder, 2002), ISBN 978-3-86187-241-2.—A collection of photographs by Kristen Bjorn.
- Men of Kristen Bjorn (Berlin: Bruno Gmünder, 2003), ISBN 978-3-86187-282-5.
- Stallions (Berlin: Bruno Gmünder, 2005), ISBN 978-3-86187-682-3.
- Body Heat (Berlin: Bruno Gmünder, 2007), ISBN 978-3-86187-860-5.
- Greats—Kristen Bjorn: Men of the World (Berlin: Bruno Gmünder, 2008), ISBN 978-3-86787-000-9.
for Naked Highway
|GayVN Awards for Best Director
for Man Watcher
for Dream Team