Steven Grooby, founder of Grooby, issued a statement today on last week’s production hold. The text reads as follows:
“As many of our models are aware, we had planned the largest production week in the 22-year-old history of our company this past week in Vegas. Producers were flown in from Asia and Los Angeles; I was in from the U.K.; and we had models coming from Chicago, Alabama, Texas and Oregon as well as local talent. With 15 VR shoots planned, and a large number of hardcore and solo scenes, we had $40,000 worth of model fees that were earmarked for Grooby and JustVR performers.
“Immediately after our first set of the first proper day of filming, we were called about the moratorium and canceled all shoots while we reevaluated what to do with hotels, flights, makeup, P.A.s and other expenses committed to. I’d like to thank all the performers who were already scheduled and traveling in their understanding of the situation, and although their expenses were still covered, as we could only do solo scenes, their expected paychecks were vastly reduced. I’d also like to thank all the trans performers in Las Vegas for coming through at last minute and working with us on solo scenes, salvaging some of the budget.
“While the events of this week have been costly to us, they are minor in comparison to what could have happened to our industry if not for the fast response of the Free Speech Coalition and all the performers they contacted to be retested. We support the FSC in its call for a moratorium. Although the production ban has been lifted, we don’t feel it’s conducive to the quality of the scenes or the emotional well being of the performers to begin production of our scenes immediately and have canceled the last planned day of shooting.
“We fully support and appreciate the work FSC has done this past week to keep our industry safe. We would also like to call for more discussion about on-set and off-set safety, and how to mitigate any further issues of performers bringing health issues into the tested performer pool. We’d also like to further discussion on trade shoots and educating those performers.
“We would like to thank all of the performers working with Grooby for their understanding, and their respect of the current situation. If any of them feel directly or indirectly affected by the moratorium, or have questions, they can contact Kristel ([email protected]) or myself ([email protected]).”