David Joseph Reacquires Red Light District, Ramps Up Production

LOS ANGELES—Red Light District, one of the top porn production companies of the past 20 years, is returning in September with a new look and new movies.

Co-founded by AVN Hall of Fame executive David Joseph in the Fall of 2001, Red Light District became synonymous with hardcore gonzo porn in the early to mid-2000s during the peak of the DVD boom. Joseph sold the company to Pulse Distribution in 2011, but he recently reacquired it from Pulse with plans to re-establish and re-envision the brand.

Red Light District’s movies—all shot in 4K—will be exclusively distributed by Pulse, a leading industry distribution hub since 2005, starting with Covet on Sept. 11. 

Covet stars cover girl Elena Koshka, Gia Derza, Zoe Bloom and 2018 AVN Best New Starlet Jill Kassidy.

“I think Red Light District is a great brand and now more than ever there’s room for someone to produce high-quality movies and spend money on the productions,” Joseph told AVN.

“I think in today’s environment people are afraid to put money into a studio or into an adult movie because it’s so difficult to get a return. I see it different. I think it’s a great opportunity.

“We know that when companies don’t put money into their movies and cheapen their brands it’s obvious they’re falling off. But the companies that are doing it are getting traction.”

In addition to producing Red Light District DVDs, Joseph said he intends to capitalize on other revenue streams as he ushers the classic gonzo brand into a new era. He’ll relaunch ClubRedLight.com with all the new content in the coming months.

“We’ve shot four movies already that are really high quality,” Joseph said. “We’re classing it up and taking a different approach. We have to build up trust with our customers and be consistent.

“We’re doing it totally different this time because the times are different. The movies are not going to look like they did before. I’m putting a lot of money into these movies and doing it the right way.”

Joseph continued, “It’s still going to be hardcore but there’s going to be a lot of production value. I definitely think there’s room for it and I think it’s going to be good for the industry. I kind of missed the industry. Now I’m back and I’m enjoying it.”

Red Light District joins an impressive orbit of companies under Joseph’s supervision, including a pair of upstart novelty brands—Rock Candy Toys and Bedroom Products—and US Arcades, a state-of-the-art adult video delivery system that is revitalizing the arcade experience in retail stores nationwide.

“There is synergy right now with all the companies,” Joseph said. “None of them compete; they all complement each other and they’re all doing really well. And Pulse does a great job with distribution. They are the biggest and the best at what they do.”

Joseph took over as CEO of Red Light in 2003, guiding the studio’s ascent to the porn industry's heavyweight division, working with proven directors who became exclusive to Red Light with ownership agreements.

In the process Red Light turned into an influential force in the hard gonzo era that defined the mid-2000s porn landscape. During Red Light District’s reign the company also launched The Candy Shop, an ethnic-themed company, and Amateur District, an all-amateur company. In addition Joseph & Co. introduced a feature arm called Red Light District Films.

Red Light District collected plenty of accolades along the way, racking up 24 AVN Awards between 2003-2010. Red Light and its sister company Platinum X combined to release 17 titles a month at their height in 2005.

“David Joseph is committed to bringing back the Red Light name featuring only high-quality content,” said Jim Kohls, who founded Pulse, which now distributes DVDs for more than 60 adult studios. “He will be using the best directors and stars in the industry. The Red Light brand was very strong under David’s ownership and it will re-establish itself with David’s commitment to the brand.

“I’m looking forward to working with him and I think that Red Light will be better than ever.”

Red Light District not only loomed large in the porn world under Joseph's direction, the studio became buzzworthy in mainstream thanks to its distribution of some of the most notorious sex tapes in history. Red Light distributed one of the top-selling adult movies of all time, 1 Night in Paris, featuring hotel heiress Paris Hilton. That title won 2005 AVN Awards for Top Selling Release of the Year, Top Renting Release of the Year and Best Overall Marketing Campaign - Individual Project. 

The following year Joseph did it again with 1 Night in China, the sex tape that showcased the late pro wrestler Joanie “Chyna” Laurer. 

Red Light District made national headlines in the mid-2000s for distributing other celebrity sex tapes, including separate videos with Dustin "Screech" Diamond, the “Long Island Lolita” Amy Fisher (Amy Fisher Caught on Tape, 2007) and Joey Buttafuoco.

The company appears to be setting the tone early with Covet, which features Elena Koshka taking on five-time AVN Male Performer of the Year Manuel Ferrara. Jill Kassidy pairs off with Bambino; Zoe Bloom tangles with Ferrara; and Gia Derza squares off with Steve Holmes.

In the second movie, Secrets That We Keep, which is set to hit the streets on Sept. 25—Red Light will release two DVDs per month—2018 Female Performer of the Year Angela White rematches with Ferrara. The two shared the AVN Award for Best Boy/Girl Sex Scene in January for their scalding performance in Angela 3. The all-star cast also includes Kissa Sins, who was the Best Girl/Girl Sex Scene winner with Katrina Jade in 2018, coupled with Ferrara; 2019 AVN Awards co-host Romi Rain and Small Hands; and Kenna James colliding with two-time AVN Male Performer of the Year James Deen.

To pre-order Red Light’s new titles, contact Josh St. John, VP of Sales for Pulse, at [email protected].