At only twenty-six, Viktor Belmont’s career has taken him on a path from hustling on Haight St. to becoming an internet queer porn sensation. Viktor's repertoire ranges from performing, escorting, writing, directing, and more, eventually gaining a huge online following as well as becoming a Rentboy.com favorite. Through a community of majority cis gay men, the amazing support he’s received from his fellow male escorts as well as the general public has gained him the title of first trans man to win Best Newcomer at Rentboy’s own Hookie Awards. Since then, he’s used this platform to launch trans masculine focused projects such as MSTRVKTR, a donation based online series of intimate short films between himself and his beautiful partners, made free to the public.
In the limited realm of trans masculine representation, which sites like FTM Fuckers and Bonus Hole Boys lead, Viktor succeeds in breaking barriers and providing inspiring sexual interactions between people whose identity often can come with physical dysphoria. While the trans male gay community may be a subset under the trans* umbrella, it is extremely important for Viktor to portray himself and the people he represents as loved, validated, cherished, and sexy, a juxtaposition from typical trends of fetishization of transgender bodies. This approach is similar to the way in which he provides a form of recognition and comfort to his clientele when escorting.
Viktor is currently involved in yvngblvvd, a creative collective with fellow artist Oliver Young and has an upcoming zine release, Diary.
What was your viewpoint of porn before you started performing, and eventually, producing/directing?
I love porn. I really, really do. I think porn as a genre is very under explored. What makes something porn? Sex in film? Penetration? A cum shot? What is cinema compared to porn? Where is that line drawn? What is artistic nudity comparatively to what we dub as a jerk off video? Does something have to be high budget? What about the performers? Do you want to see performers who look like you, or people who look like someone else? Representation in media is incredibly important, porn included.
I think that for me, directing, I really wanted things to have a sense of intimacy. Every performer I’m with in MSTRVKTR is a real life crush for me. I thought that the sex we would have might look a little different than shooting for a bigger company with a stranger I had never met. I’m terrible at acting during sex. I can’t fake anything. I get too lost in it, I get too into the person I’m with. I wanted the camera rolling while people enjoyed each other.
As a director, I want to have bodies be adored and respected, desired and devoured. I wanted to be unforgiving in the fact that I’m trans and gay, no beats were skipped in scenes I’ve shot. I love my body and so do my partners. Showing that in porn is incredibly important.
What do you think people should be aware of when performing together?
In a porn sense? I think really making sure there’s enough lube happening so things are comfortable, along with water breaks. If you can get a bed to bang on, it’s the best. Couches and hard floors look hot at first, but your knees are going to be pretty unhappy. And always bring snacks for after. Because snacks rule! (Pro tip: bring a salty and a sweet snack, you never know what will sound good after getting railed under hot ass lights.)
What did you imagine the biggest challenge would be for you coming into the industry?
I was a little worried about being pre-op at the time when I first got into porn. I hadn’t had top surgery yet and all the transmen I had seen making strides in the porn industry had top surgery. But that’s actually one of the reasons I got into porn. I saw a lack of different types of transmale bodies in porn and thought, there are lots of transmen who don’t have top surgery, or don’t feel the need to get top surgery or take hormones.
I can shoot porn pre- or post-op and my body is just as desirable, regardless. I felt confident in myself and thought that by trying to put myself out there, someone might see a body that’s like theirs and maybe it could make them feel more confident. Maybe if I put myself out there, some good would come out of it.
Humans are a spectrum of beautiful, wonderful, incredible bodies that are all desirable and should be treated with respect. As it turns out, it wasn’t a challenge at all and it was a gift to shoot that first video. It was well received and I have some awesome GIFs of me getting fucked eating pizza floating around tumblr.
Do you feel that there is an aspect of performance art to escorting?
My old Dom told me, I’d never know if she was being real or playing the part. She taught me well.
How do you go about establishing boundaries with clients?
On the table, consent is how I do things, always. It’s one of the first things we go through together in an exchange of words. Besides, you have to ask for what you want so I can give it to you.
Does escorting provide you with a way to validate others and/or take care of them?
It does. It’s deeply emotional work. My goal is to facilitate making someone feel good. Is that holding you through the night? Is it taking you to places you’ve never been? Is it praising you, the way you need to be praised, for the skin you’re in? Is it paying attention and listening, really learning who you are and what you want?
It’s a priority for me. To make someone feel adored, to love the time spent with me--someone’s comfort and joy is of the highest priority for me. Whatever someone truly wants, I’m here to give it to them the best I can. I’m here to care, on your terms, and make you feel 110%.
What do you think is the biggest misconception people have about escorting?
That sex work isn't real work. I’ve escorted to feed myself, I’ve hustled to get enough money for hormones, I’ve turned tricks off Craigslist to make sure I could survive. I’ve been denied jobs by employers who couldn’t place me and my gender. Sex work has been a constant for me, I’ve done it for survival and I’ve done it to thrive. I’ve made connections that have gotten me here, stronger than when I first started. It is work and should be respected as such.
In regard to the Hookie awards (and congrats on your win!), what is your opinion about the lack of an equivalent ceremony for female workers in the States?
Thank you! It was a wonderful win and I feel so thankful for everyone who supported me. That night was something I’ll never forget.
I’ve touched on this before in a previous interview, actually, but it’s something we need to be talking about.
My friend, who identifies as female, was at the Hookies. She’s also a sex worker. She told me that, “this could never happen for us. We would get shut down and arrested. Everyone in the building.”
I understood what she said. We live in a society where men can get a lot of passes where women don’t. Women get paid less than men in most industries, and women who escort are far more likely to get arrested than men. But why is this? How can we change this?
These are questions I don’t have answers to, but I do recognize the immense amount of privilege I have as a gay male, masculine identified sex worker. I understand that the fact that I even can post an article where I freely speak about escorting is flexing an extremely large amount of privilege.
I support sex workers, I support women, and support trying to make changes in this industry and society to make things even between all spectrums of gender and identities. I am here for it and I will try the best I can to support, change, and move forward to create a safe space and have equality be the standard for all of humanity. I am here, to listen, and to try the best I can.
What role has the internet and social media played in helping you find a supportive community in relation to queer identity?
The internet has been everything to me, honestly. It has given me community, it has given me support. The blossoming of online communities offering resources and solutions, along with a sense of belonging to so many people is incredible. Even since I first came out on the internet, back in the Myspace and LiveJournal days, there’s been community online that offers support and guidance that keeps growing.
I remember searching “FTM” into Google in middle school. I saw a Geocities website about what testosterone was and an article about the movie Boys Don’t Cry. Beyond that, there wasn’t much information. But social media networks like Myspace offered a community for me. I met an amazing trans woman on Myspace who I developed a relationship with that would alter my life. She helped me in ways that I could never thank her enough for. She helped build up the courage to follow my heart. Someone on my Top 8 helped shape me into who I am today, honestly!
What kind of representation did you have as a gender variant person when you were younger, if any? What kind of representation are you looking to provide for younger and older generations alike?
Representation? The closest thing I could relate to was my comic books. I read a lot of manga, especially about pretty boys and strong female characters. I used to want to be a prince like in my books. That was my representation. In mainstream media, it was few and far between. There were rock stars I idolized, rough and raw and unbridled. But even when I came out, I didn’t have many folks to look towards for guidance. I was gay, I was an escort, I wanted to be a pretty boy. I didn’t want to be hyper masculine, I loved all my femme queens around me and being with them gave me life. It was conflicting.
I thought the only way to be a transman was to be hyper masculine. It wasn’t who I was. I ached to be like the boys in my comics. I was tough but tender. I had a moment of realization a couple years ago that I was trying to measure my success by someone else’s ruler. The weight of hyper masculinity was one that I didn’t want to bear. The crown I wanted to wear was mine and mine alone. It was okay to be different.
I realized there isn’t one way to be trans. There isn’t one way to be human. And that’s what I want to help bring to the table. That you are being the best you, that you’ve ever been, right now. That you are enough. That there isn’t a guide book of how to be trans. No one can invalidate your identity. You’re important. You’re worth it. You belong.
Now that you’ve experienced so much growth in your transition, what do you feel is the next step to maintain self-care and continue your relationship with your body, mind, and spirit?
It’s wild, because looking back, I have no idea how I went through all of it. It’s given me so much empathy towards people. I am so, so lucky to live the life I’ve lived. I’ve loved and lost. I’ve run from my demons and let them consume me at times. I’ve fought for my identity and in turn have fought for my life more times than I can count. I’ve woken up feeling like my heart is so full it’s going to burst with love. I’ve gone to sleep with it broken.
But it never really stops. . . .That’s the thing. Being authentic to your true self? That’s a lifetime. I love being trans. I love what I have done to be myself. It is worth it. Learning to love? It’s a choice.
For me, I’ve chosen love. I’ve chosen it over hate. I’ve chosen owning up to my mistakes. I’ve chosen to understand that I’m just human.
You know, a transboy, a follower of mine, sent me a letter in the mail right around my birthday this year. When I read it, I cried. I just laid on my bed and hugged the letter for so long that my ruffled sheets left marks on my cheeks. I read it, and everything he told me is everything I felt when I was younger. Every fear. Every hope. Every single word was how I felt when I was his age. I realized that I might actually be helping someone. That I could be the person I needed when I was younger. He told me that I didn’t take a bad picture, ever. I want him to know that every picture of me sleeping, I’m drooling with my mouth open and limbs flailed in every direction.
Dorian Oliver is a transmasculine audio engineer and ingénue based out Atlanta, GA