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The Lady Loves Cigars

India Allen, the 1988 Playboy Playmate of the Year, is looking for a breakthrough movie on her terms.
Mervyn Rothstein
From the Print Edition:
Ron Perelman, Spring 95

(continued from page 3)

"That's the next one I'm going to do," she says. She and her business partner, Khara Bromiley, raised half the money for it from the Promark film distribution company and are hoping to get the other half in time to start production in June.

A second script is a Western called Sweet Texas, a gritty, bad-girls kind of movie about two women from different walks of life. And then there's Iron John, a drama about a military officer who is accused of murdering his own father.

"I'd like to be the Clint Eastwood of independent films," she says.

She has nothing against nudity and sex in her movies, but she wants it to be nudity and sex that is not cheap and tawdry, "that has a little integrity and a little honor."

"People like to see me sexy," she says. "I don't have a problem with that. I just want the movie to have a real story and to show a real, loving relationship between two people. What makes it hot is the relationship."

Posing in the nude has never troubled her. "I thought everything I ever did for Playboy was really beautiful. And they have always treated me like a queen. I get invited back to the mansion every year. My Playmate of the Year video, in fact, sold more than 150,000 copies when it was first released. It was the company's best-selling video ever, and it still is. And every time it's re-released, it goes gold."

In no way, though, does working without clothing turn her on; there are all those lights, she says, and "there are too many people around."

Her parents have never expressed objections about what she does. "They are fairly open-minded," she says. "They have never judged me. They don't believe in judging. Besides, according to the Bible, anything can be forgiven. They believe that the day of judgment comes the day you die, and you are judged on how you've lived your life. So they offer me lots of love, and they always say to me that there's nothing you can't be forgiven for, that they hope that whatever I do, if I don't like the outcome of it, if I don't believe it's right, then I'll change it."

Indie also dismisses summarily the critics of Playboy and of visual depictions of sex and female nudity as degrading to women. "I know they don't like me, and I really don't care," she says. "I don't think there's anything degrading about nudity or sex, as long as it's presented in the right way. Feminists have made men very angry about women, and I don't think that helps things in any way. A lot of men are really bitter about women being in their faces all the time. I'm not saying inequality is the way to go either. We should get equal pay, and we should have the right to be what we want to be. But I don't think getting right in somebody's face and landing it down their throat is the way to do it."

Feminism, she says, has also emasculated too many men. "I think feminists just screwed it all up," she says. "Men are trying to be overly sensitive and overly caring. There's nothing wrong with sensitivity and caring. It's necessary in a relationship. But it bothers me if I don't feel that it's natural. And women like me say, 'Wait a minute, where's your balls?' I don't want to date somebody who doesn't have balls."

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