As was posted on AVN.com…. Les Rich comments on Gauge situation and places blame on Keith O’Connor, here is O’Connor’s response.

I got a call on Sunday from Gauge while I was driving back to LA. She told me about the AVN article where Metro Counsel and CFO Les Rich tried to paint a picture of Gauge and I hating each other. We decided that perhaps sometime this week while she was in LA, perhaps we’ll make a joint statement. Until then, here is my response to the article and his comments.

While I respect the fact that he wants to portray his company in the best light, the truth as well as his companies long history of similar issues regarding paying talent and not living up to contracted agreements shows that Mr. Richs’s comments are both misleading and filled with half truths.

First, Gauge Unchained. The movie was shot before I joined Amazing/Metro. The movie was something Gauge and I came up with along with director Mike Adam. The plan was to shoot the title and find distribution and release the title. Gauge got no money to perform because she owned a portion of the title. When I joined Metro on the east coast one of the first things that they asked was “are you close with Gauge?”, well she happened to be one of my closest friends and I ran her website. So I spoke to her and got her to sign a performer contract to work exclusively with Metro. Then I had told Kenny Guarino about the Gauge movie, he wanted it. So a CONTRACT (drafted by Les Rich) was completed and signed that Metro would buy out the movie at cost and then pay a % of the revenues, of which Gauge was to receive a share of. Metro released the title and here comes the shocker, they NEVER once paid a % to Gauge or anyone else involved eventhough the title sold like crazy and still sells well and despite the fact there is a contract to PAY. Not only that, but there has never once been reporting of the sales numbers. The attitude of Les Rich has always been, “our first payment will always be our last payment.” Les Rich once bragged to Kenny G’s executive assistant in Rhode Island, “The contracts I draft are filled with loopholes to ensure that no one will ever see a commission“. (great way to keep moral high and employees loyal). Metro knew about and acknowledged that Gauge was to receive a % of the movie revenues, but they called her and said they preferred to pay her a flat fee instead of giving her a percentage (this shows they KNEW they were responsible for her). But in the end, because Metro failed to use her in scenes they decided to hold back the money they knew they owed her for Gauge Unchained as a means of leverage in their attempt to force her to makeup scenes they neglected to put her in. Rich states that Metro bought the movie Gauge Unchained FREE AND CLEAR, man is that a lie.

Second, xxxGauge. Another patented manipulation of the facts. Before I joined Amazing (Metro’s parent company) I ran over ten websites. Amazing wanted them and we agreed on a deal for cash and %. ONCE AGAIN, there was an agreement in place that after the sites generated a certain $ amount, I would receive a % of the gross revenues of the sites for the life of the sites. Shockingly, 2 years and OVER $200,000 in revenue later and not once have I seen a dime. I told them from the start many of these sites involve girls partiticipation, and that participation is what generates the revenue. The girls were ALL to receive a % of the revenues of the site that carried her name as long as the girl participated. For Les Rich to claim he knew nothing about it clearly shows he is not being forthright and honest in his portrayal of this situation. Dynamite was the namesake of xxxDynamite and she personally spoke to Rich about her checks, her % and her checks were to be mailed, did she receive any income? Not a dime. Jessica Darlin had the same deal, she was actually getting paid because I brought the issue directly to accounting, and guess who APPROVED every check that went out??? Les Rich. Again, for him to claim he knew nothing about royalties eventhough he approved all payments during my tenure, shows dishonesty. So Jessica got paid until I left Metro. When I left Metro, Rich took over all web related issues and stopped payments to Jessica Darlin saying he didn’t know there was an agreement to pay her (excuse me, you were paying her and approving her payments for months and months). After Jessica and her husband made repeated calls to Rich, he claimed he owed her nothing and basically “tough luck on your end”. So knowing Jessica was having medical issues, I paid her monies out of my own pocket that Metro owed her. Rich states that Metro bought the xxxGauge website FREE AND CLEAR, man is that a lie.

Once again, Rich knew from the beginning Gauge and all the other stars were to be paid a percentage of her website, so much so that they used it as a negotiating piece in trying to get her to makeup scenes.

As for Gauge, here are the facts. Gauge was signed to a contract but she was never used, or shall I say she was used sparingly. Production was being run with other performers / directors as a priority and Gauge was left behind. The powers that be back east rarely looked at these issues, but after 6 months Kenny demanded that a review be made of all the contract stars and directors, he looked at how much money Gauge had received on her contract and then requested documentation on how many scenes she had been in. When the disparity came to light all hell broke loose. Metro brought Gauge in and started the game. They wanted her to do “make up scenes” so as to bring her more current. Her response was “why should I do makeup scenes to cover for your fuckup? You chose not to use me, why is that my fault.”. Then they started promising her her own line, directing gigs, money for Gauge Unchained, website moneys… BUT they were using those things as carrots to dangle over her head to do makeup scenes. She refused to do these makeup scenes, so they pulled all monies from web royalties off the table as well as the other carrots, as a way of recouping the monies they lost by not using her. Metro’s explanation for all the mix-ups? “It was Keith, Keith, Keith“. Very easy to place blame on someone not in the room, someone 3,000 miles away. “Keith never told us you were to get a % of website revenues“, outright lie. “Keith never told us you were to get money from Gauge Unchained“, outright lie. They put Gauge and I against each other, and I went from being her best friend to being her biggest enemy, while Metro stood in the middle trying to take the role of innocent participant. They would do anything to shun their own responsibility in this fiasco and anything to get her to get more scenes shot.

But, as is always the case eventually bullshit gets uncovered and it was only a matter of time that Gauge and I got to talking and compared notes, which we have! Now both of us see that we were played as pawns against each other, and Metro did everything in their power to get her to shoot scenes for them to make up for their mis-use of Gauge, even if it meant trying to undermine a 3 year friendship. Didn’t work. Gauge and I spent 3 days hanging out at this years AVN show, catching up. She’s now engaged to Jason, her long time boyfriend, and she’s as happy as I’ve ever seen her. Best part is once we cleared all the bullshit away, it was like we never missed a beat.

The saddest part of all of this is that I believe in my heart that Kenny Guarino had nothing to do with this manipulation of the truth and the way Gauge was treated. Kenny is always fair and generous to his contract stars and employees. The problem is Kenny has such a vast empire that he can’t micromanage everything, so he leaves it in the hands of people in positions of authority in his company. Therein lies the problem, the people he puts in these positions abuse that trusted role of authority. The CFO of the company is ultimately responsible for looking at contract payments compared to performance, because he authorizes the payments. To catch this after 6 months is egregious! When you stand in front of Kenny G, all alone with no one else in the room and have to explain how this error occured, what do you do? Tell the truth and admit you were too busy meeting with outside clients pursuant to issues outside of your responsibilities to the company that pays you, or place the blame on others??? In this case, the best thing to do was to divert the attention away from the fuckup and blame everyone else, turn people against each other. That’s what happened here. Gauge loved her contract, Gauge loved her website, and she wanted to be more involved with the company! She signed with Metro because 1) I was going to be there and 2) because she wanted to become involved in directing, having her own line. Gauge is NO flake, she doesn’t want anything for nothing, the kid works hard and always has. The powers that be dropped the ball here and everyone under the sun from me, Joey Wilson, Neil Persky to Gauge herself were blamed, everyone but the person truly accountable – the CFO of the company whose responsibility it is to manage these issues.

When I came out from the east coast and was named Head of Production for Metro, I went out and met with Gauge personally to try and get her back! Kenny G gave me instructions which I followed to a T and I made her an offer and she made a counteroffer, we were close to bringing her back. Guess what happened? Les Rich got involved directly and all talks ended.

Gauge and I are doing great, we’ll probably get together sometime this week while she’s in town dancing at Spearmint Rhino. And who knows maybe she’ll come in and do some work for Defiance, as we’ve started to discuss a joint project with her and Aurora Snow (Battling Divas).

Here is the original article from AVN.


It was petite former Metro contract girl Gauge doing the shouting at the AEE Expo on Friday (at least figuratively). The flyers enumerating her accusations of unfair treatment by Metro were offered to visitors of her booth, the main decoration of which was a large poster with a military camouflage theme that also listed Gauge’s claims against the company and urged her fans to not spend money on any Metro product.

Although Gauge reportedly had disputes with the company in the past and had managed to resolve them, according to an industry veteran who asked not to be identified, Gauge’s main complaints with Metro currently are that she was not paid for her work in the movie Gauge Unchained and that Metro is illegally running a website as the official Gauge site even though she has no affiliation with the site and hasn’t been paid any percentage of profits from the site that she was contractually entitled to. Gauge and her manager, Syko Sun, said that, in a nutshell, Metro breached its contract with Gauge and owes her money. Sun said he could only guess at the amount, since he said that Metro refused to show Gauge any documentation about how much money the company was making from her site.

Here’s where we start playing “he said, she said.”

“This has happened to a lot of people, that’s why [Metro doesn’t] have contract stars anymore,” said Sun. “They don’t pay any of their talent. They’ve got big lawyers, and the girls can’t have lawyers work on contingency” and get satisfaction, he continued. “They dropped the ball, not her. Why they put one of the cutest girls in the industry on the backburner, I have no idea.”

Lesley Rich, Metro’s corporate attorney and CFO, naturally has a different take on it. “The company defaulted her under her contract only after many months of paying her without her performing the scenes that she agreed on,” he said. “Metro had paid Gauge a substantial amount of money for which it never received any performances.”

Gauge said that she has spent $20,000 on legal fees in a lawsuit against Metro that she filed in 2004. Rich said that he is unaware of any lawsuit Gauge might have filed.

Rich also told AVN.com via email that “The movie Gauge Unchained was acquired by Metro and its affiliates from or through Keith O’Connor, now of Defiance Films. They were purchased free and clear of any claims. When Gauge told Metro that O’Connor deceived and lied to her, Metro actually paid her monies for the movie, even though it didn’t have to.”

Sun claimed that Metro also purchased footage from O’Connor and made the video Gauge Exposed, for which Gauge has received no payment or royalties. She also said that she never signed a model release for the film and that she was told that because she had signed releases for other films, Metro didn’t need another for Gauge Exposed. Rich said, however, that Gauge Exposed is not a Metro title and that he has no idea where that content came from and who released it. “Thus, Metro owes Gauge nothing in that regard.”

(The production company listed on the Gauge Exposed DVD is New Machine Productions.)

In response to Gauge’s complaint that Metro breached its contract with her regarding profit percentages from her website, Rich said: “The website, and all the content on it, was also purchased free and clear from O’Connor. Gauge again came to Metro and said that she was promised a percentage from O’Connor. Metro agreed to pay Gauge a percentage for her to maintain the site and work it with journals and special events. Upon Gauge’s default with Metro, the agreement was terminated.”

It’s unclear – not to mention unlikely – that Gauge’s anti-Metro Expo campaign will help the two reach a resolution. But Gauge, who was promoting her new site, ilovegauge.com at the Expo, said she’s angry and disappointed about what happened and wants to get her message out.

“I’m known for being personable with my fans, and when they come up to me pissed off, saying, ‘Hey, xxxgauge.com hasn’t been updated in a long time,’ I’m like, ‘Whoa, I have nothing to do with that site, I have nothing to do with Metro,’” she said. “They’re tricking my fans…People say they’ve bought stuff from the site signed by me, and I have no idea who at Metro is signing my name, but it wasn’t me.”

An impatient fan horde clusterfucked around Gauge as she spoke to AVN.com while sitting on a table at her AEE booth, a small one along one wall. “These girls work hard for their money,” she said. “And they don’t even get a fraction of what other people make off their work. I’m not trying to change the world, I just want what was agreed upon,” she said. “I think these issues need to be addressed.”

Metro maintains that its business practices are above board, however, and representatives at the Expo said they were baffled why Gauge would try so hard to smear the company during the convention.

“Metro has been in business for many years and has grown its world class library of adult films by developing excellent relationships with its directors and its artists,” Rich said. “Metro pays its bills and satisfies its contractual obligations.”

Rich also said that Metro is “unaware of any scenes Gauge was asked to perform without proper testing.”

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