Wednesday evening, Christian Mann passed away at home in downtown Los Angeles, following a 20-month battle with cancer.
A 34-year veteran of the adult entertainment business, Christian was a beloved and respected figure in the world of adult. He was a gentleman of deep integrity and generosity, with a long and well-deserved reputation for being a peacemaker and fence-builder. He was also a loyal and loving friend.
In recent years he served on the board of the Free Speech Coalition (as he had done in the 1990s), and as general manager at John Stagliano’s Evil Angel.
Even though we knew this was coming, today is still a very rough day for us at TRPWL, as we’re certain it is for all of the many people whose lives Christian touched.
Tomorrow, we’ll pay tribute to an extraordinary man with a tremendous lust for life, but tonight we mourn… and send our love to his wonderful wife Melissa — an angel if there ever was one — and the rest of his family.
Godspeed, my friend.
I asked him how he wanted to be remembered, and he didn’t hesitate.
“I was audacious.”
He was that, and so much more.
There are thousands of people whose lives have been made more interesting by my Christian, and I’ve heard from more than I can count. People all over the world love and respect him, and their stories remind me that love doesn’t end because a life does. I hope they’ll remember his kindness and humor as well as his brilliance and sense of adventure. He’s always told me that love shared is multiplied and pain shared is divided. I’m remembering that right now. ~ Melissa Mann
I have known Christian Mann for close to 30 years. He has been a good friend for all that time. I remember the first time I met Chris, he was stepping out of a limo to visit the sales people at General Video West. He was working for the gay movie company, Catalina, and I knew for sure he was gay. I was wrong.
I was so impressed. The limo, the crisp clothes, he looked successful. I wanted that. He was inspiring.
Christian is one of the most intelligent people I have ever met in my life. He has always been a great advisor. His even temper and quick wit was always a great refresher in a tense conversation. He seemed to do what was logical; he made good decisions.
When I became clean and sober over 8 years ago, he was the first person I called. He was very supportive and gave me a direction that I have followed ever since. Once again he was an inspiration. But this time it was for living, not success.
I am so grateful that I was able to call him my friend. I will never understand how such a great guy, someone who is of service to so many, someone who is so caring, gets dealt a hand like this. No one said life is fair, and this proves it to be so.
This world was a better place with him here. I know I will miss him terribly. My condolences go out to his wife and kids. He will be missed. I know I will see him farther down the road. ~ Howard Levine
I love you CSM and I feel you with me, man. Thanks for being such a great friend, teacher & brother!!! ~ Sean Michaels
Christian was a unique, very intelligent, very morally aware executive in the porn business. He cared about the talent, he cared about all his employees. He could be ruthlessly honest in firing someone, but he always cared about what was best for that person. His advice will be sorely missed at Evil Angel. ~ John Stagliano
Christian’s accomplishments are numerous and outstanding. However what makes him truly exceptional are the people whose lives he has touched. When I think of Christian, it always brings a smile to my face and warms my heart. I love you Christian and I am a better person for knowing you. Peace my friend. ~ Diane Duke
I would like to say – from Direct Models – so passes a man with integrity, honesty and a strong code of ethics, with an often appreciated ability for diplomacy and the ability to get others to bend and flex and make agreement where none otherwise seemed possible. Sorry to bring out an old cliche, but do they really make them like that anymore? From us at LADM – we are deeply saddened yet also appreciative to have shared in his life and we are enriched for that. God Bless and RIP. ~ Derek Hay
Christian had his hands in so many things in this business, from working so hard for the Free Speech Coalition, to trying to come up with a system with the vacuum that [AIM Healthcare left] when it closed. He was always trying to come up with ways of bringing people together and he was so good at getting people to come together. ~ Kevin Moore
He’s one of the greatest men I’ve ever met. He started me in this business and I love him dearly. ~ Chi Chi LaRue
Goodbye & goodnight, Christian Mann. It is my sincere honor to have worked with you, laughed with you, and called you friend. Rest well. ~ Eli Cross
He wanted to help the industry solve some of its many problems. He helped come up with testing notification system that didn’t violate HIPAA laws, and better ways of preventing HIV from spreading in the case of detection. He always wanted to listen to performers, and I helped set up a number of meetings where performers told him about their experiences and hopes regarding the testing system. He was on the board of the Free Speech Coalition, and despite what you may have read, was not paid for the hundreds of hours he put in. He was always amazed at the people who wanted to tear down the industry instead of working together to solve problems. ~ Glenn King
The adult industry has lost a great man. Christian Mann was my mentor and inspiration in both industry politics and business. My heart goes out to his wife and family. ~ Mo Reese
Christian Mann was a force to be reckoned with. I never let his mild mannered ways fool me…there was a heart and soul about his every move, and his gentle way of conducting business was a mastery played by one of the few masters I have met after 44 years in the adult industry. Chris was my friend…Chris was everyone’s friend, and yet he made me feel that I was his only friend. He was a standup guy, and tomorrow will be a worse day without him on this earth. We will meet again Brother, but for now rest. You fought the good fight, and you gave a lot of us the courage to face our fears in a whole new light. Rest now my friend. ~ Al Bloom
Christian is one of the most decent & kind people I have ever known. Although, I have only known him for a few years, he has left a positive imprint on my life. We hold him in the highest respect for his love of life & family, his courage, his spirituality, & his tenacity. He is and always will be an inspiration to us…. Thank you Christian for being so wonderfully kind. Your spirit will always be remembered with a smile. God bless you & your family. ~ Anikka Albrite
This is a truly crushing tragedy for me. I have known Christian for over 20 years. I never heard anyone talk about him but with the highest praise. I never saw him in other than a cheerful mood. An amazing combination of intellect, wit, insight, business acumen, class, generosity, loyalty, honesty, candor and more, nobody could be a better friend. What horrible news. ~ Clyde DeWitt
I would always text Christian questions about what I could and could not shoot, to avoid getting into trouble. He would always answer back with good advice and good humor. He encouraged me, when I was afraid the stuff I was doing wouldn’t translate well. He told me not to worry about what everyone else was doing. Integrity mattered to him, and he had so much integrity. ~ Dana Vespoli
A great man died. Christian Mann you have inspired me & made me laugh so much. Your legacy will live on. My heart is with you and your family. ~ David Lord
Every time I saw him at a show it automatically filled me with pride just knowing he was in our business. He always made me love the industry even more. ~ Julia Ann
Christian was one hell of a guy. Every time I spoke to him he was so full of positive energy and encouragement. This industry has lost a great one today. He had an amazing honesty and impenetrable integrity. He went though his cancer like he lived every day, with dignity and honor. I am happy to have known him. I am glad he is finally resting peacefully.
My condolences to Melissa and the rest of his family. ~ Jay Allan
Christian Mann was one of the very first people I met in this business, and he was one of the truly good ones. Rest in peace. ~ jessica drake
One of the best people I’ve ever met. ~ Manuel Ferrara
I can’t even put into words how upset I am over the passing of Christian Mann. He was my friend and he was the best person ever. ~ Dana DeArmond
Christian Mann, one of the most well-thought of and sharp adult industry executives and — beyond that — a lovely person passed away last night, July 30, after a long, bumpy ride with cancer. He was both 53 and 26.
An L.A. kid who was educated by the Jesuits, Christian led a lot of lives before and during his time in porn, where he was an executive at Videoteam and Evil Angel and, knowing porn resumes, probably 20 other companies, too, and he was one of those people you meet in this business who reaffirms your need to believe that it’s OK, that there are good people here, that you’re not going to Hell.
Already a fan of his because my late friend David Aaron Clark spoke so highly of him, when I finally met Christian in 2006 or so he floored me with how much he knew and how thoughtful he was in his speech. He didn’t feel the need to hit you over the head with his importance, but I know for a fact that he gave my friend David a reason to live, by giving him a job and by shepherding DAC’s last great movie.
He was one of the only industry people I spoke with when someone close to me was struggling with sobriety a few years back, and he told me that I had to let it go (to his credit he did not burst into song). He told me that he’d been sober since 1988 and shared some stories that were as horrible as they were reassuring.
So it was that I felt Christian had won one for the team when he showed up with Melissa Mann. Married in his late 40s (I think), he seemed downright gleeful. He was a guy with a twinkle in his eye. You knew that from the loftiest intellectual level to all the delightful baser ones that he was so pleased with the person who walked into his life.
He celebrated his 26th sober anniversary just last week before the clock ran out. I’m so sad for all those who were close to him that he is gone, but I am happy he was aware — and Christian demanded to be aware — that he was firmly, fondly loved. ~ Gram Ponante
A lovely reminiscence of Christian by Van Styles may be found here.
An interview with Christian posted by our friend Percy Leon: