Penthouse Icon dead at 79
SPRAGGETT ON CHESS
Bob Guccione, born in Brooklyn in 1930, raised as a Catholic –and at one time considered entering the priesthood before becoming the controversial publisher of PENHOUSE magazine — went on to become one of the world’s wealthiest men according to FORBES magazine, has died yesterday at age 79. The ‘KING OF SLEAZE’ is no more…
For those of my generation who found PENTHOUSE a natural step in the rebellion process against our PLAYBOY-wanking fathers, this news comes as sad news indeed! We are all getting older…even Madonna!
Bob Guccione dead at 79; created Penthouse magazine
He was a king of sleaze.
Bob Guccione, who took magazine nudity to a new level — or low — with his hardcore Penthouse magazine, has died of cancer at the age of 79.
He passed away with his wife, April Dawn Warren Guccione, and two of his children by his side at his Plano, Texas home where he’d lived since last year.
The one-time New Jersey resident, whose magazine’s explicit nudity served as a raunchier rival to the more high-brow Playboy, was also a painter whose works were featured in museums such as the Nassau County Museum of Art in New York.
Guccione claimed Penthouse earned $4 billion during his reign as publisher, and he was listed in the Forbes 400 ranking of wealthiest people with a net worth of about $400 million in 1982.
The skin magazine brought down a religious icon and a beauty queen during the 1980s. It published nude photos of Miss America Vanessa Williams, which cost her the crown. It also featured sexually explicit tales of televangelist Jimmy Swaggart that toppled his ministry in 1988 and 1989.
But Guccione’s empire ultimately fell apart thanks to several bad investments and changes in the pornography industry, which became flooded with competition as it migrated from print to video and the Internet.
He ultimately lost it all, as his company, his world-class art collection, and his huge Manhattan mansion were eventually sold.
Married four times, Guccione had a daughter, Tonina, from his first marriage and three sons, Bob Jr., Tony, and Nick, and a daughter, Nina, from his second marriage.
With News Wire Services
SPRAGGETT ON CHESS