Before Laverne Cox There Was Ajita Wilson
In the past year we have seen Laverne Cox and Caitlyn Jenner grace the covers of Time and Vanity Fair. Maybe more surprisingly a trans woman of color was featured in the African-American magazine JET over 30 years ago. Side note: the fact that Ajita Wilson was born a man only came out after her untimely death in 1987.
As far as can be known, George Wilson was born in Brooklyn around 1950. There are other theories that suggest that George was born in Rio and went under the name of Magda Hurtado, but that was the name of the character Ajita Wilson played in the movie Sadomania, coincidentally also her mother's maiden name and birthplace. The story goes that she began as a transvestite performer and illusionist in the red light district in New York and completed her sex change in the mid-1970s. That was followed by Ajita's entry into the adult movie industry, where she featured in mostly underground projects filmed in the New York area. She was discovered by a producer from Europe that enticed her to work mainly in France, Italy & Greece in either hard-& softcore sex-movies. In the late 1970s she made a cross-over into Euro-Trash and Women-In-Prison fare. The Internet Movie Database begins her filmography with the 1976 movie Gola Profonda Nera (Black Deep Throat), proposing close to 40 movies to her credits. But that list is surely incomplete. To ad to the confusion of trying to compile a complete list of her movies, many of these films were released under different titles and often in edited form, explicit or tame.
During her career she encountered such directors as Joe D'Amato, Lucio Fulci and my perennial favorite Jess Franco, for whom she made her most outrageous films. Oddly, she often played characters simply named ''Ajita'' In Sadomania aka Hellhole Women (1981, Jess Franco), where Ajita plays the cruel lesbian warden, she takes delight in offering us a sensual portrayal of this character. In an over the top and confusing scene, director Jess Franco, in the role as a gay brothel owner, has Ajita, disguised as a man, playing his male lover. And let's not forget the implied scene where an unfortunate female prisoner seems to be raped by a dog...I just love the subtleties of European exploitation movies. Another Jess Franco film, Macumba Sexual, has Ajita in the role of Princess Obongo, a voodoo princess returning from the dead and haunting a woman by using sexual hallucinations. And what about Apocalipsis Sexual where Ajita and her co-stars are experimenting with inserting odd objects in their orifices, or Naked Wild Erections. Hmmm, I wonder what that movie is about? In the 1980s she starred in several women-in-prison flicks such as Hell Behind Bars, Hell Penitentiary and Savage Island (with Linda Blair), an incoherent production using footage of two other movies from the 1980s. Her last film was Bocca bianca, bocca nera, which some idiot translated as Love Boat. There was no Captain Stubing or Julie in this one, I tell ya.
On May 16, 1987, Ajita Wilson was involved in a tragic automobile accident in Rome and she passed away from a cerebral hemorrhage. When you think about Pam Grier, Jeanne Bell, Tamara Dobson and Teresa Graves as the quintessential Blaxploitation Goddesses, don't forget to put Ajita Wilson on that list.