Jenna Jameson was Born Jennifer Marie Massoli on April 9, 1974 in Las Vegas, Nevada. Her father was a police detective with the Las Vegas Police department, and her mother was a showgirl. In 1976, her mother died from skin cancer, leaving her father and grandmother to raise her. As a child she entered several beauty pageants and took up ballet class.
According to her autobiography, The family moved to a cattle ranch in Fromberg Montana where in October 1990, she was beaten with rocks and gang raped by four boys after a football game. She also claims she was raped a second time, that same year, by her boyfriend’s biker uncle, Preacher. Scared to tell her father, she left home and moved in with Jack in her first serious relationship. They later moved back to Las Vegas, where Jenna sought employment as a showgirl, like her mother.
She found employment at the Vegas World show; however, she quit after two months because of the brutal schedule and low pay. Her live-in boyfriend, Jack, encouraged her to apply for a job as a stripper, and in 1991, at 17 years old, she began dancing in Las Vegas strip clubs using a fake I.D. She applied at The Crazy Horse Too strip club, and was told they would not hire her because of the braces on her teeth. That night, she removed them with a pair of needle-nose pliers and the following day they hired her. Within six months, Jenna was earning about $2,000 per night.
A bout with drug addiction from 1991 until 1994 slowed her career considerably. She went to live with her father in Redding California in 1994 to detox.
On December 20, 1996, Jenna married porn star Brad Armstrong (Rodney Hopkins). They were only together for 10 weeks, informally separating in March 1997, and divorcing in 2001.
In the summer of 1998, Jenna met Jay Grdina a former pornographic studio owner and heir to a wealthy cattle-ranching family. Jay began his pornographic film production career after college. The two fell in love and developed a hugely successful business relationship. Since 1998, Jay is the only on-screen male sex partner to Jenna, acting under his stage name, Justin Sterling. Jay proposed in December 2000 and they married June 22, 2003.
Jay helped Jenna further her career, by 2001, she was earning $60,000 for a day and a half of filming a single DVD, and $8,000 per night dancing at strip clubs. In 2000 Jenna and Jay formed ClubJenna as an Internet pornography company. ClubJenna.com provided explicit diaries, relationship advice, and even stock tips to paid members in addition to pictures and videos. Within three weeks, the site was turning a profit.
The business later diversified into multimedia pornographic entertainment, first by administering other porn stars’ websites, then, in 2001, by production of pornographic films. The first ClubJenna film, Briana Loves Jenna (2001), co-produced with Vivid, cost just under $300,000 to make, and grossed over $1 million in its first year.
Jenna’s films averaged sales of 100,000 copies, compared with industry standard pornographic films, which would sell about 5,000 copies. Her success in ClubJenna turned into a multimillion-dollar enterprise grossing more than $30 million in 2007.
In 2008, Jenna announced her retirement from pornography, yet she will continue the more than 150 websites owned by ClubJenna.
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