Larry Claxton Flynt Jr. (born November 1, 1942)
The life cycle 124875
Important years of life
Flynt was born in Lakeville, Magoffin County, Kentucky, the first of three children to 23-year-old Larry Claxton Flynt, Sr. (1919–2005), a sharecropper and a World War II veteran, and 17-year-old Edith (née Arnett; 1925 – 1982), a homemaker. He had two younger siblings: sister Judy (1947–1951) and brother Jimmy Ray Flynt (born June 20, 1948).
Mary Flynt (1961–1965; divorced)
Peggy Flynt (1966–1969; divorced)
Althea Leasure (1976–1987; widower)
Flynt created his privately held company Larry Flynt Publications (LFP) in 1976. LFP published several other magazines and also controlled distribution. LFP launched Ohio Magazine in 1977, and later its output included other mainstream work. LFP sold the distribution business, as well as several mainstream magazines, beginning in 1996.
He was first prosecuted on obscenity and organized crime charges in Cincinnati in 1976 by Simon Leis, who headed a local anti-pornography committee. He was given a sentence of 7 to 25 years in prison, but served only 6 days in jail; the sentence was overturned on appeal following allegations of prosecutorial misconduct, as well as judicial and jury bias.One argument resulting from this case was reviewed by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1981. Flynt made an appearance in a feature film based on the trial, The People vs. Larry Flynt, playing the judge who sentenced him in that case.
Outraged by a derogatory cartoon published in Hustler in 1976, Kathy Keeton, then girlfriend of Penthouse publisher Bob Guccione, filed a libel suit against Flynt in Ohio. Her lawsuit was dismissed because she had missed the deadline under the statute of limitations.
In 1988, Flynt won an important Supreme Court decision, Hustler Magazine v. Falwell, after being sued by Reverend Jerry Falwell in 1983, over an offensive ad parody in Hustler that suggested that Falwell’s first sexual encounter was with his mother in an out-house. Falwell sued Flynt, citing emotional distress caused by the ad. The decision clarified that public figures cannot recover damages for “intentional infliction of emotional distress” based on parodies. After Falwell’s death, Flynt said despite their differences, he and Falwell had become friends over the years, adding, “I always appreciated his sincerity even though I knew what he was selling and he knew what I was selling.”
In 1996, Flynt published his autobiography, An Unseemly Man: My Life as a Pornographer, Pundit, and Social Outcast (ISBN 978-0787111786).
A film, The People vs. Larry Flynt (1996), was based on his life which features Woody Harrelson in the title role. Flynt himself made a cameo appearance as an Ohio judge and also a jury member in the court scene of the Jerry Falwell case. The film was directed by Miloš Forman and co-produced by Oliver Stone. Harrelson was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance as Flynt.
In 2003, Arena magazine listed him at No. 1 on the “50 Powerful People in Porn” list
LFP started to produce pornographic movies in 1998, through the Hustler Video film studio, that bought VCA Pictures in 2003.
In June 2003, prosecutors in Hamilton County, Ohio, attempted to revive criminal charges of pandering obscene material against Flynt and his brother Jimmy Flynt, charging that they had violated the 1999 agreement. Flynt claimed that he no longer had an interest in the Hustler Shops and that prosecutors had no basis for the lawsuit.
In 2003, Flynt was a candidate in the recall election of California governor Gray Davis, calling himself a “smut peddler who cares”
In 2003, Flynt purchased nude photographs of Private Jessica Lynch, who was captured by Iraqi forces, rescued from an Iraqi hospital by US troops and celebrated as a hero by the media. He said he would never show any of the photographs, calling Lynch a “good kid” who became “a pawn for the government”.
A documentary, available on DVD, Larry Flynt: The Right to Be Left Alone, directed by Joan Brooker-Marks was released in 2008.
In January 2009, Flynt filed suit against two nephews, Jimmy Flynt II and Dustin Flynt, for the use of his family name in producing pornography. He regarded their pornography to be inferior. He prevailed on the main trademark infringement issue, but lost on invasion of privacy claims
One Nation Under Sex, which documents the colorful sex lives of America’s most powerful leaders, was co-written by Larry Flynt and Columbia University history professor David Eisenbach and published in 2011.
In May 2015, Flynt endorsed Hillary Clinton in the 2016 presidential election. In an interview with Marfa Journal later that year, he described his political views as “progressively liberal”.