The Flynts: Porn business is now a family feud; Jimmy Flynt Answers Five Questions

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from www.cincinnati.com – Jimmy Flynt spends more time talking to lawyers these days than to exotic dancers and porn stars. It’s what happens, he says, when the family business turns into a family feud.

Flynt and his older, more famous brother, Larry, haven’t spoken in three years and have been fighting in court for most of that time over the future of the Hustler adult entertainment business. Jimmy Flynt and his sons have so far lost at every turn, with Larry successfully arguing they can’t use the family name or the Hustler brand to sell adult products.

Jimmy also lost a bid for a share of the Hustler company, but he’s appealing that ruling. Jimmy, 64, of Florence, now owns two stores of his own, “Jimmy Flynt Sexy Gifts” in Florence and downtown Cincinnati. He recently took a few minutes to catch up with The Enquirer:

QUESTION: How has the adult entertainment business changed over the years?

ANSWER: It’s changed a lot. When I entered the business in ’69, I’d just returned from Vietnam. We were just having fun, making money and hanging out with pretty girls. But as time goes on, it grew into a major business. There was lots of money, lots of personalities. After a while, it wasn’t as much fun and it was a lot of work. After a while, your lawyers become your partners.

Q: What are you selling in your stores these days?

A: I’m going with a totally different business model. I’m getting away from the porn and DVDs and going more to health and wellness, lingerie and sexy gifts. It’s cleaner. It’s more inviting. People just feel more comfortable in that environment.

Q: After your family’s legal troubles in the 1970s and 1990s, did you ever think you’d see two stores owned by the Flynt brothers in downtown Cincinnati (Larry’s Hustler Hollywood store is on Seventh Street)?

A: What a switch. I never imagined there would be two stores in the most conservative city in America. Cincinnati’s changing a little. You can blame it all on Simon Leis (the Hamilton County sheriff and former prosecutor who brought obscenity charges against the brothers in the 1970s). He was out for blood. He was ready for battle. But he probably did more for the brand than anybody.

Q: What’s your relationship today with your brother, Larry?

A: We’re estranged. There’s no communication there with Larry. We’re just entangled with all the lawsuits and it’s just a relationship that’s really strained. When you’ve been in business with a guy for over 40 years, when you grew up together, it’s difficult.

Q: What are the chances of you two reconciling?

A: It’s very difficult to communicate. You get lawyers involved. You have a lot of people who would attempt to block that communication because it’s in their interest…. It’s a very small family. When you only have one brother, it’s kind of odd after all these years to be separate. But we’ll get through it.

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