Larry Flynt
Photo Credit: Everett Collection

Larry Flynt

The People vs. Larry Flynt

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About Him

Grew Up... selling moonshine in Kentucky in the 1950s. Larry had a rural upbringing, where you could do just about anything if you had the ambition. Even back in Kentucky, Larry's most loyal business partner was Jimmy, his younger brother.

Living… in Cincinnati, where he runs the floundering Hustler Go-Go club with his brother Jimmy. His new magazine, Hustler, is starting to take off, with sales especially up after he publishes nude photos of ex-first-lady Jackie Kennedy. Along with the new success, however, comes new challenges, with reactionary censors and the religious right ready to crucify Larry as a peddler of smut.

Profession… owner of Hustler. Unlike most erotic magazines of the time, Larry's pornographic periodical goes for full-frontal nudity instead of just hinting at it. If you’re going to publish a pornographic magazine, Larry reasons, you might as well do it right.

Interests… sex, money, and shaking things up. Larry is as dedicated to going against social norms as he is to making money.

Relationship Status… in a relationship with Althea Leasure, a former stripper at the Go-Go club. However, Althea quickly won over Larry’s affections, and she helps his magazine take off. But while she's ready to follow Larry closely every step of the way, her drug addiction puts a strain on their relationship.

Challenge… defending Hustler. Larry faces a series of legal challenges to his business empire from forces including televangelist Jerry Falwell, going all the way up to the Supreme Court. While Larry openly calls himself a “scumbag,” he believes that his ongoing legal battle is one of American civil rights. His best defense is the First Amendment and its provision for freedom of speech. As he sees it, “All I’m guilty of is bad taste.” 

Personality… entrepreneurial, wise-cracking, and stubbornly headstrong. When Larry believes his argument is righteous, he won’t stop fighting until every last case against him is dropped. With a child’s heart and a dirty old man’s mind, he's certainly a wily one. As he explains to his lawyer, “I’m your dream client: I’m the most fun, I’m rich, and I’m always in trouble.”

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