Paul Thomas (director)

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Paul Thomas
Philip Charles Toubus[1]

Winnetka, Illinois[2]
Other namesPhil Toubes, Phil Tobias, Phil Tobus, Phil Thomas, Paul Tanner, Paul Thobias, Judy Blue, Cleo Edwards, Cloe Edwards, Bo Edwards
OccupationPornographic film actor and director
650 as actor
374 as director (per IAFD)[3]

Paul Thomas is an American pornographic film actor and director. He is a member of the AVN Hall of Fame and the XRCO Hall of Fame.[4][5]


Thomas was born in Winnetka, Illinois to an upper-middle-class family.[2] His father was of Greek-Jewish descent and his mother of Russian-Jewish descent.[6] He is the nephew of businesswoman Sara Lee Lubin. Although he attended the University of Wisconsin at Madison on a basketball scholarship and studied political science, he turned to acting as a career.[2][6]

He began his acting career in the play Hair in both Chicago and New York.[6] Then he appeared in the stage version of Jesus Christ Superstar on Broadway and in a touring production, where he played all the male roles except Peter.[6] After completing the touring production, Norman Jewison cast him as Peter in his film version of Jesus Christ Superstar.[6] He also performed in the long-running play Beach Blanket Babylon in San Francisco.[6]

He signed with the William Morris Agency and went to Hollywood, where he appeared in a few television shows.[6] At this point, he appeared ready to start a career in mainstream television and movie work, but instead he turned to the career for which he would become more famous.[7]

Thomas started working in pornography in 1974. He met the porn producers the Mitchell Brothers while playing in a musical in San Francisco. He performed in several porn loops for them and, in 1976, appeared in his first porn feature, The Autobiography of a Flea.[6]

Thomas performed mostly using the stage name "Paul Thomas", but he has also appeared under several other names. In 1982 Thomas was arrested for smuggling cocaine into the United States from South America. Convicted, he served one year in jail.[2] Following his release from prison, Toubus resumed his career and, in 1983, won the Adult Film Association of America Award for Best Actor in Virginia. He had a starring role in the 1985 film series Taboo American Style.[citation needed]

Thomas started directing porn films in 1985, and has directed for Vivid Entertainment since 1986. As of 2007 Thomas has acted in over 500 films and directed nearly 300 films, winning seven Adult Video News Awards[8] and two X-Rated Critics Organization Awards[9] for best director. He was inducted into the X-Rated Critics Organization Hall of Fame in 1986.[5]

Thomas is a member of the Adult Video News Hall of Fame.[4] He is a personal friend of Jennifer Ketcham, who recounts Thomas' directing style as relying heavily on aesthetics with "one-hundred-page scripts" and "deftly placed lighting" in order to create shadow effects on his performers' bodies. She also stated that Thomas would require more acting from his performers than many other directors in the industry.[10]

Partial filmography[edit]

As actor[edit]

As director[edit]

  • Justine (1984)
  • Beauty & the Beast 2 (1990)
  • Passages 1–4 (1991)
  • Twisted (1991)
  • Bad Wives (1997)
  • Bobby Sox (1997)
  • Fade to Black (2002)
  • Heart of Darkness (2004)
  • Key Party (2005)
  • The Masseuse (2005)
  • The New Devil in Miss Jones (2006)


  • 1983 AFAA Award for Best Actor – Virginia[11]
  • 1991 AVN Award for Best Director – Video – Beauty & the Beast 2[8]
  • 1992 AVN Award – Reuben Sturman Memorial Award For Loyalty to the Adult Film Genre[8]
  • 1993 XRCO Award for Best Director[9]
  • 1994 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – Justine[8]
  • 1997 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – Bobby Sox[8]
  • 1999 XRCO Award for Best Director[9]
  • 2002 AVN Award for Best Non-Sex Performance – Fade to Black[8]
  • 2002 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – Fade to Black[8]
  • 2004 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – Heart of Darkness[8]
  • 2005 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – The Masseuse[8]
  • 2006 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – The New Devil in Miss Jones[8]
  • 2008 AVN Award for Best Director, Film – Layout[12]
  • 2008 XBIZ Award – Outstanding Achievement in Movie Production[13]
  • 2013 XBIZ Award Nomination – 'Director of the Year – Feature Release' for Friends With Benefits[14]


  • Nicolas Barbano: Verdens 25 hotteste pornostjerner (Rosinante, Denmark 1999); ISBN 87-7357-961-0: Features a chapter on him.


  1. ^ Mikulan, Steven (May 9, 2007). "Paul Thomas: The auteur of sex". LA Weekly. Archived from the original on May 18, 2008.
  2. ^ a b c d Kennedy, Dana (October 31, 1997). "NUDE AWAKENING". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved April 17, 2016.
  3. ^ Paul Thomas at the Internet Adult Film Database; retrieved January 6, 2014.
  4. ^ a b "AVN Hall of Fame". Archived from the original on August 14, 2007.
  5. ^ a b "XRCO Hall of Fame". Retrieved January 6, 2014.
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h Eichelbaum, Stanley (September 13, 1976). "The route from St. Peter to porn". San Francisco Examiner. Retrieved March 27, 2019.
  7. ^ Ford, Luke (1999). A History of X: 100 Years of Sex in Film. Prometheus Books. p. 103.
  8. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "AVN Awards Past Winners". Retrieved October 24, 2007.
  9. ^ a b c "XRCO Award Winners – 2002 & Before". Retrieved January 6, 2014.
  10. ^ Ketcham, Jennifer (2012). I Am Jennie. Gallery Books. p. 227.
  11. ^ "'Miss Jones' Sequel wins Erotica". Springfield Leader and Press. March 16, 1984. Retrieved April 5, 2019.
  12. ^ Rutter, Jared (January 12, 2008). "2008 AVN Awards Winners Announced". AVN. Archived from the original on April 4, 2008. Retrieved December 18, 2007.
  13. ^ "Paul Thomas". Internet Movie Database. Retrieved October 31, 2017.
  14. ^ XBIZ Nominees 2013, XBIZ, January 2013

External links[edit]