A Minute With Director Kay Brandt

Kay Brandt

Kay Brandt (Photo courtesy of Adam & Eve. Used with permission.)

by Flash

Kay Brandt has directed over 50 adult movies since 2009 and has written eight erotic novels. Her involvement in the film industry goes back over 20 years working in both the mainstream and adult film industries. In the adult industry she has worked for Girlfriends Films, Metro, and Digital Playground and other studios.

Brandt is not just a veteran of directing adult films but also writing adult films Brandt at Girlfriends Films and Digital Playground, among other notable studios. Her work has been nominated for numerous AVN, XBIZ, and other awards. Her film Cherry 1 won the 2011 Nightmoves Award for best all girl feature and 2012 XBIZ Award for best all girl feature and Cherry 2 won the 2012 AVN Award for best all girl feature and 2012 AVN Award for best all girl group scene. She has even adapted her erotic novel Safe Landings into an adult movie by the same name for Adam & Eve in 2015.

Now Brandt has adapted New York Times best-selling author Selena Kitt’s erotic novel Babysitting the Baumgartners for the blue screen for Adam & Eve. Kitt’s novel introduced readers to the characters Doc Baumgartner and Carrie Baumgartner, are the parents of the Baumgartner family. Ronnie is the long time, now barely legal, babysitter who is asked by Doc and Mrs B (as Ronnie calls Carrie) to go to their summer home to help with the children over the summer. Ronnie gets seduced by Doc and Mr. B as the summer goes on. In Brandt’s movie Mick Blue and his real life wife Anikka Albrite bring the characters of Doc and Mrs B and Sara Luvv plays the nubile Ronnie bringing Kitt’s characters to life on the screen.

Flash: What first interested you in making an adult movie based on Selena Kitt’s book Babysitting the Baumgartners?

Kay Brandt (KB): Last year, in 2015, I turned my novel Safe Landings into a film for Adam & Eve because the head of production at Adam & Eve had wanted to create a line of movies based on books. It’s like the last frontier; everything’s been done in adult except for this really and it’s not easy to do because very few books can be adapted for an adult film – plenty of books can be made into mainstream movies – but not so much for adult. Most are eliminated by budgets, scheduling, and talent. My novel Safe Landings, I was able to adapt it to a movie last year and it did very well – sold very well – and it was heavily nominated at the awards this past January.

Because of the success of that, Adam & Eve expressed making another movie based on a book and Selena and I had been talking for probably about a year about making one of her books into a movie. I met Selena because she owns Excessica Publishing, which is my publisher; that’s the company that publishes my books. I found out about her through that and started talking to her, just very casually because during the process of making Safe Landings into a movie she had to get involved because as the publisher there are some things that she needed to be involved in as far as the cover of the book had the cast on it, was going to mention Excessica, at one point we thought we might put pictures from the movie inside the book (which we didn’t end up doing). There were just things that Selena had to be involved in, to either okay or help out with and she just thought the whole thing was very intriguing. Mostly I knew that I could continue to write books and make them into movies or find other authors. I’ve spoken to probably a dozen other authors about their books and I just kept finding that it was really tough to find a match – find a book that actually fit my criteria.

And then Selena and I started talking about a different book of hers called Under Mr. Nolan’s Bed. It was way to taboo, way too taboo. There’s no way it could really be made into a film at all – whether it be adult or mainstream. So she suggested Babysitting the Baumgartners and I thought that was cool because it fit. I was able to check off all the boxes as far as what I was going to need in book material that could easily or at least seamlessly transfer over to film.

The other piece of that was that Selena is a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author and there’s no known book before Babysitting the Baumgartners that was a New York Times bestseller or a USA Today bestseller that has been made into an adult film. So this is the first of its kind and we just knew that with her level of notoriety and the fact that Babysitting the Baumgartners has sold two million copies worldwide since it was published in 2008. It’s such a beloved book and there are so many people who have read it, whether they are open about it or not, and we just knew that’s what we needed if this book film line was going to be successful for Adam & Eve beyond my own stories was to adapt a best seller – do something that no one else had done.

Flash: How did you go about writing the script to stay as true to the book as possible?

KB: Chapter by chapter. I just went through chapter by chapter and I wrote about half of the book in script form and I sent it to Selena so she could see what it was going to look like because authors who have never written a script have no idea what that process is like. It’s amazing. I didn’t really realize this until I started writing the script for Baumgartners and I presented it to Selena and she was like wow, it just looks totally different because books are all about detail and passages and paragraphs and scripts are about shots, and action, and dialog that happens within a scene and it’s stripped down. So it’s minus all of the things that she is used to seeing being the owner of a successful publishing company and being a best-selling author was just like reading a totally different thing. She approved the first half, she thought ‘wow this is really cool I can’t believe how much this is translating as far as how her chapters were becoming scenes in a screenplay pretty easily and it was all working and she said ya, go ahead and do the rest so I wrote the rest in about probably two days and then sent it to her. What was a 125-page book became a 34-page screenplay and that’s how it went.

Flash: Other than Henry and Janie, the children, did you have to make any major changes when writing the screenplay?

KB: There were some things that we could not show. We did film some of the things that we took out of the movie just in case and it was a mutual decision between me, Selena, and Adam & Eve to remove some of these scenes. I did want to try to capture as much of the book as possible. But there are some scenes that really worked in the book that just didn’t work on film – strictly because of location, setting, that kind of thing.

One of the first scenes in the book the character Ronnie is sunbathing with Mrs. B and Mrs. B is putting suntan lotion on her and this happens in the movie — it’s the first scene where Mrs. B comes out in her micro bikini and starts to caress her while she’s putting sunblock on her back. In the book, Doc, Mr. Baumgartner, comes out and he masturbates while he watches them do that. In the book, he’s doing it from an upper floor; from a balcony on the second floor of the house. But we didn’t have that and, secondly, there was no way that we could sort of hide that from the neighbors so there was no way. We filmed it. We filmed him masturbating, or doing a solo, watching them in the distance at the poolside. Then in the final edit when the movie was coming together in post production it just made the scene rather creepy. And in the book it’s very sexy but it just didn’t translate; some things are better left to the imagination. And that’s what happens with the book, it’s better to just visualize this guy in the distance on a balcony who’s doing this really forbidden thing but filming him not too far in the distance poolside on the same level with them just made it seem weird. It was too sudden in the movie for that to happen too. It just didn’t feel right to anybody, including Selena, so we all agreed to take it out.

There were a couple other elements like that. There’re several chapters in the book that really focus on the kids and how Ronnie interacts with them as their babysitter and how she interacts with the Baumgartners and the kids as part of the family as the babysitter and I had to remove all of that in the script. There is just no way. There is no possible way to do that. Those kind of adjustments were made.

Flash: When you went to cast the movie, did you immediately think of Ryan Driller and Anikka Albrite for Doc and Mrs. B?

KB: I thought of Anikka Albrite immediately. It was Selena who wanted Ryan Driller and I didn’t have a lot of knowledge of his work then. I know that he’d done a big movie for Adam & Eve and he was gaining a lot of popularity. He’d just won an award at XBIZ and so I had a meeting with him. It was during that meeting that I really was like ya, he could definitely play it and then I had two meeting with him and Anikka before I actually officially cast them in the roles and their chemistry was good – it all seemed good. I think as far as a literal translation from the book Ryan Driller is probably more of what Selena was describing in the book and that’s why she thought he would be good for it.

Flash: You held a casting call for Ronnie, which went to Sara Luvv. Did you have a lot of respondents and was the decision hard?

KB: It was – it was very difficult and yes we got a lot of respondents but there was criteria that had to be met and one of them was that whoever played Ronnie not only had to look youthful and act youthful but had to be already skilled in anal sex and some other things. There were some candidates who sent in audition tapes and actually came to meet with me. During the audition process, I asked how they felt about doing anal and lots of solos and the situations that we were going to be filming in. They actually had problems with it. So that sort of narrowed by choice down but I wanted Sara from the beginning. I had a feeling about her before I’d even met her – before we even auditioned just looking at her pictures on her agent’s website and I’d contacted her agent before we did the auditions and her agent had told me that Sara was going to be on vacation during the shoot days so we thought from the very beginning there was no way we were going to have her and then her agent talked her into changing her vacation plans out of chance she might get the role. Out of chance, I mean there was no guarantee at that time and she did and then she showed up at the audition and she was just perfect and so we knew right then and there that it was her.

Flash: Mick Blue ended up taking over for Driller for the role of Doc when Driller ended up being sick.

KB: Yes.

Flash: Did this cause any last minute changes in the script due to him being new to the material?

KB: Zero. Zero changes.

Flash: Babysitting the Baumgartners runs for over four hours, what made you go with an epic length run time for the movie over one that could be watched in one sitting?

KB: Why not? I never do things typically. I don’t believe in following any kind of predesigned structure. This five sex scene two hour… it’s time for those molds to be broken. The industry needs projects like this that are totally different and are challenging and offer something unique and special in the experience of engaging with adult movies. Why not? Why not make it a collector’s item and something that you savor and you take slowly or you binge watch in one session.

Four hours was how it fit. There were 18 sex scenes in the book and I eliminated two because one took place in the water and one was not something that was needed because it was just too repetitive. We moved one of the water scenes, there was actually two sex scenes that happened in the water in the book so I moved one to the Jacuzzi – and I had Selena’s permission to do that before we did it. Before we filmed it she was fine with it and liked how it came out. Why not? Why have to cut it all down? I haven’t heard any complaints about this except from a couple of reviewers who just feel like they don’t have the time to watch it or sit through four hours and that’s their problem. That’s not mine.

Flash: Do you plan on bringing any other of the Baumgartner books or short stories to the blue screen?

KB: Yes, I do. Unfortunately, there’re not that many books in the Baumgartner series, there’s like five books. They just get more and more taboo because that’s what Selena’s fan base wanted to read. So she wrote those books according to what her fans wanted, what they told her they wanted, and unfortunately there’s no way to film them because they just get too crazy-like. The Baumgartner kids grow up and they become polyamorous people too and they each get involved with their babysitters after they are grown up and they are in college and even when they are out of college they get in a menage situation with Ronnie and with the character of Gretchen that A.J. Applegate played. The second book in the series is all about her because she gets hired by the Baumgartners at the end of the movie.

What we’re talking about – and I don’t want to say too much right now – is taking the next book in the series, in chronological order is called Crazy About the Baumgartners, that is all about them hiring Gretchen. There is a lot in that book that we can’t do for a couple of reasons and Selena and I have been going back and forth about how we can fix it. What we have decided to do is to combine the next book with a book that she’s been planning on writing because there’re holes in the series as far as time lapses. There’re two spots, one is between Babysitting the Baumgartners and Crazy About the Baumgartners where there is a gap in time where another book could be written and fill that gap. And then there’s another gap between Crazy About the Baumgartners and Baumgartners Reunion where there’s about a ten-year gap in time. So she is going to write two more books in the series – and this is pretty big news because this is going to be, for her fan base, a brand new Baumgartner book, which hasn’t happened in a long time and we’ll also be making it as a movie simultaneously if everything goes well and if Adam & Eve agrees to doing that. It would be combining the next book in the chronological order of the series with a book that hasn’t been published yet and making it into one movie. That’s what we are looking at right now.

Flash is an adult film reviewer and can be reached via e-mail at adtflash@gmail.com. Flash’s adult film reviews can be read at www.adultdvdtalk.com/reviewer/flash. Flash’s other interviews can be read at interviews.adultdvdtalk.com/category/interviews-by-flash.

Kay Brandt’s Adam & Eve movie Babysitting the Baumgartners can be purchased from Adam & Eve or from your favorite DVD retailer. Brandt’s erotic books can be found here. Selena Kitt’s book Babysitting the Baumgartners is available here.

Babysitting the Baumgartners DVD cover

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