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New Series Celebrates Hugh Hefner

Ultimate playboy turns 91, hates talk of retirement

New Series Celebrates Hugh Hefner

AP/Jae C. Hong

Hugh Hefner is still the editor in chief of Playboy magazine.

It might have been another legendary party at the Playboy Mansion, except Hugh Hefner didn't make an appearance. The Playboy founder was a no-show Tuesday night at a celebration of the new Amazon series about his life, "American Playboy: The Hugh Hefner Story."

His youngest son, 25-year-old Cooper Hefner, who became Playboy's chief creative officer last year, hosted the mansion party to screen an episode from the 10-part series, premiering Friday.

"He will kill me if I print or if you say anything about him retiring," the younger Hefner said of his father. "But I think he is really enjoying his life as a 90-year-old at the mansion."

"Hef" turns 91 on Sunday, and he'll celebrate as he has for decades, his son said, with a screening of "Casablanca" in his home theater with his guests dressed in 1940s attire.

Cooper Hefner said his father is doing "great" ("His back is bad — that comes along with aging") and remains editor in chief of Playboy magazine.

"American Playboy" aims to reach a younger audience with its retro appeal. Combining archival footage with reenacted segments, the series tracks Playboy magazine's origins in the 1950s and the changing sociopolitical climate that fueled its growth through the '60s and '70s.

The younger Hefner sees parallels between the political issues of his father's era and his own — discrimination and civil rights, for example — and is inspired to use Playboy as a platform for discussion, as his father did.

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