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A Student of the Game: Isiah Maxwell on His Meteoric Rise to the Upper Echelons of Adult Entertainment

Published: JUNE 19, 2024 | Updated: JUNE 19, 2024
In an exclusive interview with Kinkly, adult entertainment icon Isiah Maxwell reflects on his impressive career and where he's headed.

Isiah Maxwell plays many roles on and offscreen. Whether he’s the boyfriend in a feature-length video, the alpha to a couple that needs cuckolding, a military man visiting a brothel, or a rando guy in your motel room shooting POV on his phone for OnlyFans, there's just something about the handsome adult performer that makes him stand out in every scene – his stamina, even after more than 2,000 scenes.  


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“Sex is my favorite [part of the job],” Maxwell told Kinkly, “but I really enjoy trying to find the common ground in our chemistry to make an explosive scene.”

His sexual prowess and acting abilities have propelled him into an exclusive group of male performers who are consistently sought after and cast by producers and directors. Maxwell has also amassed an impressive fanbase with more than 210K followers on X/Twitter and nearly 47,000 likes on OnlyFans.

Maxwell's Rise Through the Adult Entertainment Industry

His popularity is unsurprising given that Maxwell personifies the virile, straight “ebony stud,” strapped with tattoos and a #BBC (big, black cock) who enjoys delivering passionate, potent performances.  A Cleveland native, Maxwell started in the industry as an intern, then publicist and agent,  before making his performing debut in 2012, with his first AVN nomination in 2018.


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“I have fans on both sides,” he said. “Most of the guys ask me for advice and I'm happy to provide it. My female fanbase are heavy flirters and I love that. It's fun to indulge in my fans' perspectives and hear their suggestions on how they would bring up a scene. Those who follow our careers can see who takes their craft seriously. The habits you need to form to sustain a career must be healthy – otherwise, you won't survive. I've seen many performers fumble their opportunities, and I took those lessons up as a caution. Most vets have a similar mentality to build for the future.”

The strategic approach to an adult career has been rewarding. Maxwell is a bonafide porn star in an entertainment ecosystem full of adult content creators, and 2024 is his year as the industry “it” guy. 

He won Best Male Performer at the AVN Awards in January and was nominated for Best Leading Actor and a Fan Favorite award. He was awarded Best Male Performer at the X-Rated Critics Organization (XRCO) Awards in May, adding to XRCO Best Male Performer wins in 2021 and 2022. Nominated for Best Male Performer at this year’s XBIZ Awards, he took home a Best Sex Scene in a Feature Movie trophy for Marc Dorcel’s Climax 3, directed by hot adult auteur Ricky Greenwood. In April, he signed on as a brand ambassador for streaming platform AdultTime, with options to direct and produce. 


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“I find it crazy how fast time seems to pass while working in this industry,” Maxwell added. “You have a lot of fun, making the days fly by. I've learned a lot about navigating through it, but I mainly see newcomers where I was ten years ago. That's figuring out their pacing, handling the bad and the good, and taking advantage of opportunities as they come. I always like to give time to a performer to come into their style because, for many, it's not an instant success.”

After more than a decade of shooting content, his favorite on-set moments involve conversations and BBQ.

“Some crews would have big cookouts, and the performers could hang between scenes to eat and collaborate on ideas. Those were some of the most fun conversations because the food was amazing and on point if you were in the first scene and could eat after you finished. For the second scene,” he advised, “you have to eat light and make a plan to go.”


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Championing Diversity in Pornography

Maxwell’s BDE, so to speak, is huge, which has contributed to his ability to succeed in the industry, especially as a performer of color. Though Black men have always had a presence in the industry – with legendary stars like Sean Michaels, Mr. Marcus, Lexington Steele, and (one of Maxwell’s early mentors) Prince Yashua on the A-list – it’s only over the last decade that diversity has become accepted, even pervasive. This has expanded opportunities for performers like Maxwell, who were previously considered “niche.”

“I did notice the change in how many scenes incorporate all races,” Maxwell mused. ”The number of companies [producing diverse content] has risen, which has opened the doors for performers to find their lane. Fans are also responding by buying this content; showing you performers with tats, sexual orientation, skin tone, and body types don't matter – as long as the performance and story are good.”

Looking to the Future

Maxwell's stellar performances and professional reputation for being respectful and level-headed have earned him a spot in the upper echelons of the adult entertainment industry, evidenced by the number of projects he's currently undertaking.


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“I'm a brand Ambassador for AdultTime and I'm collabing with Bree Mills to bring an exciting storytelling idea that will breathe a bit of freshness into how we see content. I love projects that couples and romantics can relate to and discuss afterward, while likely getting off to it beforehand because it was hot,” he described. “I plan to create and direct more for AdultTime, creating conversations that aren't meant to have a right or wrong, but a perspective of how to approach a situation that we can all relate to. I also plan to create more positivity campaigns, to help with on-set etiquette.”

When he isn’t working on studio productions and projects, Maxwell is busy creating content for his OnlyFans page, which hosts more than 3,000 videos and where he interacts with his devoted fanbase. 

“There are so many ways to use the platforms, and many cater to the personality and brand of that individual. Seeing performers put out a high volume of content is sort of getting a peek into their day-to-day life – the platforms just provided a way to monetize it,” Maxwell said. “Platforms have also given performers the opportunity to build up a fanbase organically and enter the industry with them. That allows them to have a head start over a newcomer looking to build their name. They may be cast over them because of it.”


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Though his days are full of work, Maxwell still finds plenty of time to devote to his private life, which he insists is fairly vanilla.

“My life is pretty normal off-camera. I have a big family, and I try to keep tabs on everyone. I'm a dog and plant dad, so I'm always noticing that a bowl needs food, someone needs water, etc. The amount of sex I have off-camera is pretty regular compared to on-camera,” Maxwell admitted. 

Finally, for aspiring porn stars who have been influenced by his style, Maxwell was, as he said, happy to provide this piece of insider advice: 

“Take your time and be a student of the game. Caution demands the industry's perks and focuses on the consistency of your performance.”  

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Joanne Cachapero

Joanne Cachapero is a freelance writer with a diverse background and expertise in cannabis and the adult entertainment industries. She and her dog Jackson are based in West Hollywood, CA. Her work has appeared in Vision Magazine, SD City Beat, Playgirl, NY Arts Magazine, XBIZ Magazine, MG Magazine, CBD Today, and others.

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