Hugh Hefner: Playboy, Activist and Rebel opens today in select cities across the country. As the title implies, the documentary spotlights the life of 84-year-old entrepreneur, and argues that in addition to providing horny men of all ages with images of naked ladies, he has been an outspoken pioneer for freedom and civil rights. Since Playboy is 57-years-old, we decided to bring you 57 facts about the man who made a living by living out the male fantasy. You might be surprised to learn that the name Playboy was a last minute substitute, Hefner was nine when he published his first newspaper, and the infamous heterosexual man of leisure has done some dabbling in homosexuality. Read more after the jump.
1. Hef’s mother, Grace Caroline Hefner, once said that she was proud of him, but would have been equally proud if he’d been a missionary, instead. Hefner later responded, “But mom, I was!”
2. Hefner attended Northwestern University for a semester, taking graduate courses in women and gender studies and sociology.
3. In 1979, Hefner’s daughter, Christie Hefner, created the Hugh M. Hefner First Amendment Award to “honor individuals who have made significant contributions in the vital effort to protect and enhance First Amendment rights for Americans.”
4. Hefner has said his best sexual experience involved his girlfriend and 17 other playmates in the grotto on his birthday.
5. After a short honeymoon in Wisconsin with his first wife, Mildred Williams, whom he met in college, the newlyweds moved in with Hefner’s parents. The couple divorced 10 years later.
6. In high school, Hefner was popular and voted as one of the students most likely to succeed.
7. The Playboy Mansion is one of the only private homes with a zoo license.
8. Hefner published the first issue of Playboy in 1953 with Marilyn Monroe featured on the cover. He omitted the cover date because he didn’t know when or if he’d be able to publish the next issue.
9. In 1967, Time labeled the Playboy Mansion as the leader in “spectator sex.”
10. Hefner is the 9th cousin, twice removed, of President George W. Bush, and the 9th cousin, once removed, of Senator John Kerry.
11. In 1970, Hefner owned a private jet worth $5.5 million. The Big Bunny, as it was called, was a modified 119-foot long DC-9, equipped with a living room, disco, and sleeping quarters suitable for up to 16 people.
12. Hefner has admitted to experimenting with homosexuality in the past. One evening in Chicago, a man offered to give Hefner fellatio, and Hefner agreed.