Desiree Cousteau: A Brief Glimpse Into the Life of the Star of the Golden Age of Porn

Desiree Cousteau

Desiree Cousteau is a legendary American pornographic actress who rose to fame during the “Golden Age of Porn”. That term is used to describe a glorious 15 year period for pornography in America between 1969 and 1984 where erotic films that showed explicit sex scenes were played in movie theatres and received positive acclaim from critics and cinemagoers. It all started with Andy Warhol’s seminal Blue Movie in 1969, followed by Bill Osco’s Mona in 1970. These two movies hold the distinction of being the first ever erotic films with explicit sex scenes to be played at movie theatres in America. These movies led to the production of some of the most well known and revered porn movies of all time, 1972’s Deep Throat starring Linda Lovelace and 1973’s Behind The Green Door starring Marilyn Chambers. The former was directed by Gerard Damiano and the latter by the Mitchell brothers. Both of these movies are considered to be the high points of pornography as a genre of filmmaking. 1973’s The Devil in Miss Jones also by Damiano, and 1976’s The Opening of Misty Beethoven by Radley Metzger pushed porn films further into the mainstream. Andy Warhol revealed later that the popular erotic thriller, Last Tango in Paris, starring Marlon Brando was heavily influenced by Blue Movie. A lot of people still use the term Blue Movie to describe a pornographic film. During the Golden Age of Porn, Deep Throat was even mentioned on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson which led to the movie achieving some success on the box office. Even though it lacked the polish and production value of a mainstream Hollywood movie, it still ended up being one of the most commercially successful movies of that year. Next year, The Devil in Miss Jones went on to become the seventh most successful film of the year, and was well received by major media, including a favorable review by notable film critic Roger Ebert. Porn started being discussed openly by celebrities and seriously reviewed by critics. Ralph Blumenthal of The New York Times termed this phenomenon “porno chic”. The incredible box office returns of low budget orn movies made them very lucrative. The increased interest and income was also bound to enhance the production value of porn movies. However, everyone wasn’t happy with this development. However, as video cassette players became common across American households, most people started preferring watching porn movies in private. As a result of that, porn movies became more gratuitous and low budget, going back to how things were and ending the “Golden Age” in 1984. In this post, we will take a look at one of the biggest stars of the Golden Age of Porn, Desiree Cousteau. Let’s get started.

Desiree Cousteau: The Legendary Pornstar

When was Desiree Cousteau born?

Desiree Cousteau was born on January 1st, 1956 in Savannah, a city of the American state of Georgia, headquarters of Chatham County. 

How did Desiree Cousteau start her acting career?

In the early 1970s she tried to start an acting career, landing a small role in the B movie film Hot Prison, director Jonathan Demme’s debut feature. Later in his career, he went on to win an Oscar for The Silence of the Lambs. Desiree Cousteau’s acting career never took off, and she was soon drawn into the world of pornographic movies.

Desiree Cousteau: Porn Career

She made her debut in the pornographic industry as an actress in 1978, at the age of 22. She arrived on the scene in the midst of the “Golden Age of Porn”. One of her earliest roles was in the film Pretty Peaches, which earned her the Best Actress award from the Adult Film Association of America. In the film, the protagonist was in a car accident after attending her father’s wedding. Two men find her and take sexual advantage of her.

Another notable work in her early years as a pornographic actress was the famous Inside Desiree Cousteau , a pseudo-autobiographical film, in which Desirée played a journalist who tried to dissuade men interested in her charms. Trying to avoid more of the same, she finds a job on a luxury yacht, but becomes involved with two porn stars. Finally, she resigns to the fact that sex is the result of whatever work you try; she sets her sights on a career as a porn star and “lives happily ever after.” With this work and Pretty Peaches , Cousteau was referenced as one of the outstanding pornographic actresses in the Golden Age of Porn.

Which production houses did Desiree Cousteau work for?

As a prolific porn actress, Desiree Cousteau worked for studios such as VCA Pictures, VCX, Caballero, Video X Pix, Alpha Blue, Western Visuals, Global Media International, Metro, Blue Vanities, Alpha France, Ventura, Odyssey, Shooting Star or Arrow Productions.

When did Desiree Cousteau retire from porn?

Desiree Cousteau continued working for four years after the Golden Age of Porn ended. In 1988, the year she finally retired to return to her home state and work as a psychologist. Over the course of her career, she appeared in 126 movies and was inducted into the XRCO and AVN Hall of Fame in the 90s.