Candida Royalle (October 15, 1950 – September 7, 2015) was an American producer and director of couples-oriented pornography, a sex educator , sex-positive feminist , and pornographic actress . She was a member of the XRCO and the AVN Halls of Fame . [6] [7]

Early life and education

Royalle was born on October 15, 1950, in New York City as Candice Marion Vadala. Initially trained in music, dance, and art in New York City , with studies at the High School of Art and Design , Parson's School of Design and the City University of New York . [6]


In 1975 she began her career in porn as a performer [7] appearing in about 25 movies before retiring in 1980 with Blue Magic , which she also wrote. [8]

She wrote regular columns for adult magazines High Society and Cheri. [9]

In 1984, Royalle founded Femme Productions , with the goal of making erotica based on female desire, as well as pornographic films aimed at helping couple therapy. Her productions are aimed more to women and couples than to the standard pornographic audience of men, and have been praised by counselors and therapists for depicting healthy and realistic sexual activity. [2]

Royalle stated that she tried to avoid " misogynous predictability", and depiction of sex in " grotesque and graphic [a way] as possible." She also criticized the male-centredness of the typical pornographic film, in which scenes end when the male actor ejaculates. Royalle’s films are not “goal oriented” towards a final " cum shot "; instead, her films depict sexual activity within the broader context of women's emotional and social lives. [29] In 1989, she signed the Post Porn Modernist Manifesto. [44]

She was also a public speaker, giving lectures at Smithsonian Institution , the World Congress on Sexology and numerous universities and professional conferences. [13]

In 2004, she authored the book How to Tell a Naked Man What to Do . [13]

In 2014, she began production on a documentary called While You Were Gone: The Untold Story of Candida Royalle about her life and the search for her birth mother, whom she had not seen since she was abandoned by her at 18 months old. [14] The project was still in production at the time of Royalle's death, but nearly all of the footage needed had been already filmed and may still be released in the future. [13]

A 5 track EP entitled Candida Cosmica , a collaboration between Royalle and Patrick Cowley from the mid 70s, was released in October 2016 by Dark Entries Records. [32]


Royalle was a member of the American Association of Sex Educators, Counselors and Therapists , [15] and a founding board-member of Feminists for Free Expression. [16]

Personal life and death

In the 1980s, she was married to producer Per Sjostedt. [17] In May 2006, Royalle announced that she was engaged to be married. [19] She died in Mattituck, New York [13] on September 7, 2015, aged 64, from ovarian cancer . [6] [125]