Playboy, Hugh Hefner

‘Playboy’ Founder Hugh Hefner Kept Behind Closed Doors As Amazon Moves Forward With Expose

Playboy has been through more than a few changes since its debut in December 1953 and certainly, the magazine’s founder, Hugh Hefner, is largely responsible for keeping the men’s magazine relevant and trendsetting in an evolving society. Much of what Playboy has done in nearly 65 years has been revolutionary, while other changes, like the recent decision to no longer feature nude women in the pictorials, turned out to have not been as well received as anticipated. All in all, Playboy has had an interesting run and it’s one that Amazon is planning to tell in a new docuseries.

Amazon Will Tell The Playboy Story With a Little Help From Hugh Hefner

Amazon will tell the ‘Playboy’ story. [Image by Rachel Murray/Getty Images]

Telling the 64-year history of Playboy in a television series format would seem to be simple with much of the show writing itself, but keeping that story historically accurate and faithful to the people involved is where the work comes in. Speaking with Chicago Sun Times, Hugh Hefner’s son, Cooper, reveals that the writers for the Amazon series won’t have to worry about exhaustive legwork in researching the series.

Hugh has opened up the Playboy archives to Amazon to aid in their telling of the magazine’s history and Cooper says his father was meticulous in keeping records. He says the elder Hefner took notes on everything. He adds that the Playboy founder also kept video and audio recordings, whenever possible. There isn’t much that has happened in the Playboy realm that hasn’t been documented by Hefner in some fashion or another.

Among those archives, Hugh has over 17,000 hours of video footage, along with 2,600 Playboy scrapbooks.

While Hefner’s willingness to cooperate might seem to indicate a fluff story, Cooper wants to assure potential viewers that they can expect nothing of the kind. The Amazon series will surely relive the greatest successes enjoyed by Playboy, but it will give equal time to the magazine’s setbacks and failures. The series will be an impartial exploration of the history of the world’s most famous men’s magazine.

The Amazon limited series is to be a 10-part event entitled American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story and set to air on April 7.

As Playboy Is Thrust Into A New Spotlight, Everyone Wonders Where Hugh Hefner Has Been

Hugh Hefner, Cooper Hefner
Hugh Hefner is in good spirits and good health, says his son, Cooper Hefner. [Image by Christopher Polk/Getty Images]

Curiosity about 90-year-old Hugh Hefner is again resurfacing amid news of the Playboy documentary, especially following Hefner’s absence from a launch party for American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story. As Cooper tells People, however, Hugh couldn’t be in better spirits.

“He’s doing fine,” Cooper says of the elder Hefner.

“My dad has always made the joke that if the mansion was your house, why would you want to leave?”

Concern was raised, when Hugh stepped down from running the Playboy business and delegated those tasks to others, spiking rumors that the magazine’s founder was suffering from ill health, but Cooper says that’s simply not so. Mr. Hefner does have a bad back and that has caused him problems at the office, so he prefers to remain comfortable at the Playboy Mansion.

While Hugh does spend most of his time at home, Cooper says that doesn’t mean his father lives in seclusion. To the contrary, the Playboy Mansion is as active as ever.

“His friends still come over and watch movies,” shares the junior Hefner.

“Everyone gets together for dinners. They still do manly night Mondays. And Friday and Saturday and Sunday, everyone gets together.”

Hugh isn’t deaf to the rumors about his ill health and, as a previous tweet from the Playboy founder reveals, he keeps a sense of humor about it.

“I wish the tabloids had informed me a little earlier in the week that I’m sick. I might have cancelled my weekend plans,” said the Playboy boss.

There is sure to be a big celebration this weekend. On April 9, Hugh Hefner turns 91-years-old.

[Featured Image by Charley Gallay/Getty Images]