Larry Flynt, founder of Hustler magazine, dies at 78

In March 1978 he was shot on the sidewalk by a gunman who was later revealed to be serial killer Joseph Paul Franklin

Larry Flynt, the controversial founder of Hustler magazine and president of Larry Flynt publications, has died. He was 78.

His brother Jimmy Flynt confirmed his death on Wednesday in Los Angeles to the Washington Post.

Flynt was a notable figure in the porn industry for nearly 50 years, launching Hustler magazine in 1974 and later expanding to three television channels known as Hustler TV. Flynt was also known for his many legal battles involving adult entertainment and the First Amendment, which were portrayed in Milos Forman’s 1996 Oscar-nominated film “The People vs. Larry Flynt,” in which Woody Harrelson played Flynt and Flynt himself guest-starred as a judge.

Born on Nov. 1, 1942 in Lakeville, Ky., Flynt grew up in poverty and eventually joined the United States Army at the age of 15 using a counterfeit birth certificate. After being honorably discharged, Flynt worked at the Inland Manufacturing Company for a few months and then as a bootlegger before enlisting in the Navy in 1960. After he was once again honorably discharged in 1964, Flynt entered into the bar business and eventually opened Hustler Clubs all around Ohio.

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In 1972, Flynt started the Hustler Newsletter, which was a two-page publication about his clubs. It became so popular that Flynt expanded it, and it eventually became Hustler magazine, which went several steps further than Playboy, with sexually explicit nude photos as well as paparazzi pictures of former First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy.

Read  more: Variety