AORTA films’ shoots operate on the basis of explicit, ongoing, enthusiastic consent. Each shoot includes time for performers involved to map out their scene, articulate their desires and limits, choose safe words, and check in with the director and/or safety monitor. All performers are encouraged to use their safe word, call stop, ask for a pause, and/or communicate a revision of their boundaries at any time, for any reason, and it will be fully respected by all parties. These consent policies extend to our team and our crew, collaborators, and helpers. Everyone is encouraged to ask for what they need, and feel safe knowing their boundaries will be respected and supported.
Any individual who breaks this agreement will be immediately asked to leave the shoot, and forfeit all pay. While we hold space for the possibility of persons who have done harm engaging in an accountability process at a later time, our first priority is always to protect our performers and crew, and meet any disclosure of harm with support, agency, and belief.
If a consent violation occurring outside AORTA films but involving a performer we’ve worked with is brought to our attention, we are committed to believing those who have experienced harm, and adjusting our relationship with the performer in question accordingly. When someone discloses an experience of harm or trauma, we believe them.
Note as of 7/31/19:
Though this has not been an express policy of AORTA in the past, moving forward we will ask all incoming performers to disclose any known harm/accountability processes in advance, so that their potential scene partners and crew can make informed decisions around consenting to their prospective work together. If we learn that a performer has been accused of harm and has entered an accountability process after their work with us, we will include their statement below, and add links to this statement in their bio and all film credits on site so that viewers may also make informed decisions about what they are watching.
We believe that supporting those who experience harm requires holding the complex and sometimes disparate experiences of multiple people simultaneously. This does not mean discounting some experiences while advancing others; it means holding the complex realities of the ways in which harm is caused, both intentionally and unintentionally. We live in a society that often fails to teach effective communication, interpretation of trauma responses, or pathways to engage in enthusiastically consensual sexual experiences. This failure does not excuse harm. It does explain the context in which each of us continues to learn, grow, and work to heal. We do not separate ourselves from those who experience or perpetrate harm; we believe that everyone has the capacity to cause harm, be it intentional or unintentional.
AORTA films is committed to critical self-awareness. We pledge to only work with performers who are likewise committed: willing to understand themselves as beings capable of causing harm, and dedicated to engaging productively and with accountability if they do so.
We believe in the values of prison abolition, and seek restorative justice both in the context of the criminal legal system and our queer community. While we understand that each person’s behavior carries specific repercussions and consequences, we do not support ostracizing or isolating those committed to accounting for harmful behavior. When those who have caused harm want to account for and learn from their behaviors, we support their active work towards accountability.
If you have further questions for us regarding this statement,
or any of AORTA’s policies, please reach out to us at helloAORTAfilms@gmail.com.
To honor our dedication to safety, transparency, and accountability, we are committed to sharing relevant details concerning performers who have performed with AORTA films and have been accused of causing harm below. We will add links to this statement to all performers’ bios and credits on our site, so viewers can make informed decisions about what they watch.
Alice the Wolfe has performed in several AORTA shorts, as well as our recent feature, (W/HOLE). Unrelated to AORTA films she has caused harm to intimate and play partners. While we were unfortunately not made aware of these violations until after shooting with her, we have confirmed with all of our performers that no harm or consent violations occurred within her work with AORTA films.