Early life and education
Asia Carrera was born in New York City to a Japanese father and German motherand is the oldest of four siblings. She was raised in Little Silver, New Jersey, attending the Little Silver School District and Red Bank Regional High School.
She studied piano as a child, and performed at Carnegie Hall twice before the age of 15. By 16 she taught English at Tsuruga College in Japan. When she was 17, she ran away from home because she felt her parents put too much pressure on her to succeed academically.
She won a full academic scholarship to Rutgers University and is a member of Mensa.
Adult film career
Carrera worked during the early 1990s as a dancer at several go-go bars in her home state of New Jersey.
After doing at least one photoshoot for an adult magazine, she put together a demo porn tape in 1993. At the end of that year she relocated to California to break into the pornography business. She announced her retirement at the end of 2003. She is sometimes credited as "Asia" or "Jessica Bennett".
Carrera has also been involved in writing, producing, and directing movies, as well as doing all her own make-up and hair-styling, and doing much of the hair and make-up for other actresses in the same movies.
As is common practice among adult film stars, the name "Asia Carrera" is a pseudonym. According to interviews, she chose the stage name surname from actress Tia Carrere (whom Carrera closely resembles), changing the spelling for legal reasons.
After her contract with Vivid expired in the mid 1990s, Carrera had her right labium minus pierced and has had a variety of 1/2" gold rings affixed there ever since. At this time she also had her first breast enlargement, going from a medium B to at least a full C cup. She has had at least one subsequent breast surgery and is now a D cup or larger.
Carrera performed only a few anal sex scenes during her career. Her first anal scene was in the movie A is for Asia (a film to which she owned all the rights) which occurred after her contract with Vivid finished.
In 1998 she appeared (in an uncredited cameo role) in the the film The Big Lebowski opposite Tara Reid in a faux pornography movie titled "Logjammin" within the film.
She was a guest reviewer for Maximum PC magazine.
Carrera lent her voice to several hentai movies, such as Inmu and Shusaku.
Carrera was featured in the book, Part Asian, 100% Hapa by artist Kip Fulbeck. She also authored one of three featured quotes on the book jacket.
Carrera has an active presence on the Internet and describes herself as "the nerd of porn." She states that she created her own Web site in the late 1990s, including writing the code and editing the pictures.
Carrera is also an avid player of Unreal Tournament. She designed her own game skins and was featured in the show Players on the G4 games cable channel, where she revealed that her screen name is "Megabitchgoddess." Carrera hosted her own Unreal Tournament server that featured custom maps designed by fans that frequented the chatroom that she has hosted on her site since 1997. She is also a Corvette aficionado but traded hers in after starting a family.
She identified investor Warren Buffet as her hero on her website, which Buffet was pleased to learn
Carrera on a film set in 2002.
In 1995, Carrera married adult film director Bud Lee. They divorced in 2003 after a long separation, but remain good friends. Carrera dated a former grip from her porn sets for a few years until his visa expired and he returned to England. Soon after, she married nutritionist and author Don Lemmon on December 19, 2003. The couple moved to St. George, Utah where Carrera gave birth to her first daughter, Catalina, on March 4, 2005. Lemmon was killed in a car accident near Las Vegas on June 10, 2006. At the time, Carrera was almost eight months pregnant with their second child. Concerned about her livelihood and worries of not being able to support her two children on her own, Carrera began to solicit donations on her personal web site. Eventually, Carrera got a message from an insurance company that a life insurance policy she had forgotten about did exist for her husband, and she was granted it after mandatory investigation.
Their son, who was born on July 31, 2006, was initially to be named Devin; but she decided after Lemmon's death to name him Donald Edward Lemmon III. She and Lemmon had planned for the birth to be unassisted, but after his death she was offered free midwifery services; she was unsure whether she wanted to give birth alone without her husband. The birth occurred 11 days before the estimated due date, while a midwife was en route.
On May 13, 2007, she announced on her web site that she had filed a request to legally change her son's name to Devin D'Artagnan Lemmon, in honor of Devin DeVasquez, the woman who first introduced her to Donald. She explained that "He's not Don, he never will be Don, and it made me want to start crying every time a random stranger would say, 'Oh he's so cute, what's his name?'" The state made an error in changing his name, however, keeping the "III".
Carrera is an outspoken atheist, stating "I've always been an atheist; science explains everything."
On March 18, 2007 she announced on her blog that once her merchandise inventory is gone she will probably shut down her website. "I've got to give my kids their anonymity. I need to back away from being famous so my kids can grow up without being ostracized by their peers for who their mommy was."
After growing tired of impostors claiming to be her on MySpace, she posted her own authentic profile.
Commentary on the Susan Russell pornography case
In 2006, Carrera was asked for commentary by The Spectrum, a St. George, Utah-area newspaper, on the local case of Susan Russell, who was charged with 15 counts of third-degree felony distribution of pornographic material. Russell allegedly sold pornographic materials and sex toys from a back room in her Earrings and More store, potentially violating the "community standards" of the Mormon-dominated town per the Supreme Court case Miller v. California. Carrera opined:
"I deliberately moved to St. George with my husband so we could raise our kids in a conservative atmosphere, in a low-crime, family friendly state. I do appreciate that the laws are there, and will make it harder for my kids to get into trouble when they get older."
However, she also said,
"Do I have a problem with porn being sold here? No, not per se. I have no problem with porn at all. Trust me, they don't exploit women, and watching porn has never been scientifically shown to lead to any increase in crime rates, be it rape, pedophilia, or any other sexual crimes."
Nevertheless, she reiterated that the community's conservatism was the reason she moved there, and that she had no plans to challenge it.
* 1995 AVN Female Performer of the Year
* 2000 AVN Best Couples Sex Scene - Film for Search for the Snow Leopard
* 2000 AVN Award nominee for Best Actress (film)
* AVN Hall of Fame