Hugh Hefner, founder of Playboy, was an alleged ‘vampire’ that manipulated young women to participate in sexual orgies while taking the role of a supporter of sexual freedom. This shocking documentary reveals.   

‘Secrets of Playboy’, a 10-part docuseries premiering on A&E on January 24, is set to lift the lid on the ‘dark underbelly’ of Playboy, which became a seedy playground for drug use, sexual abuse, and even bestiality. 

With exclusive interviews from insiders including Hugh Hefner and Sondra theodore (ex-girlfriends of Hugh Hefner) as well as former Bunny Mother’ PJ Massten, Playboy explores the dark side of Playboy. 

Theodore, who is now 65 years old, tells how group sex was conducted at Theodore’s mansion on five nights per week. This ‘broke’ me as a horse would. 

Hefner hosted weekly ‘Pig Nights,’ where he would invite a dozen prostitutes in to have sex. 

New A&E docuseries, Secrets of Playboy, lifts the lid on the 'dark underbelly' of the Playboy Mansion and founder Hugh Hefner

New A&E docuseries, Secrets of Playboy, lifts the lid on the ‘dark underbelly’ of the Playboy Mansion and founder Hugh Hefner

Hefner, who launched the first edition of Playboy in 1953, had fashioned himself as a champion of freedom of sexuality and freedom of speech in a repressive post-war era

Hefner launched Playboy the first time in 1953. He was a strong advocate of freedom of sexuality, and freedom to speak in an oppressive postwar period.

The castle-like Playboy mansion and the Playboy clubs would eventually become seedy playground for drug use, sexual abuse, and even bestiality, according to the new docu-series

The castle-like Playboy mansion and the Playboy clubs would eventually become seedy playground for drug use, sexual abuse, and even bestiality, according to the new docu-series

VIPs of Playboy clubs could indulge in whatever they wanted, even Don Cornelius (respected Soul Train host) who, according to Docuseries, held two Playboy bunnies captive and raped one. 

Holly Madison, a Playboy bunny, tells of Hefner’s refusal to protect him during sex. She also describes how Hefner was so unprotective that she considered suicide.

Interviews with Linda Lovelace (70s porn star) are also included in the series. She claims she was made to do oral sex with a German Shepherd, while Hefner watched. 

This documentary examines the legacy of Playboy’s iconic publisher who passed away in 2017.

Hefner, who was only 27 when Playboy Magazine’s first issue launched in 1953, was just 27.

The first issue featured Marilyn Monroe as the cover and sold over 50,000 copies. It also spawned a business empire that spanned many decades.

Playboy sold seven million copies per month by the 1970s. Hefner set up numerous Playboy clubs, where members could gain entry with a key that literally opens the front door. 

The documentary is a critical reexamination of the legacy of iconic Playboy publisher, who died in 2017 aged 91

It is an examination of the legacy and contributions of Playboy Publisher, who died at 91 in 2017.

By the 1970s, Playboy had taken off and Hefner opened up dozens of Playboy clubs where members gained entry using a key. He is seen with an entourage of Playboy Bunnies in 1966

Playboy was a popular sport by the 1970s. Hefner set up numerous Playboy clubs, where each member could gain entry with a key. A group of Playboy Bunnies accompany him in 1966.

Former Playboy Bunny Mother PJ Masten speaks of the 'depravity' that took place at Playboy's venues, recalling how porn star Lisa Lovelace was once drugged and forced to perform oral sex on a dog

Ex-Playboy Bunny Mom PJ Masten talks about the ‘depravity” that occurred at Playboy’s locations. She recalls how Lisa Lovelace, a pornstar, was drugged and made to have oral sex with a dog. 

Hefner saw himself as an advocate for freedom of sexuality, and freedom to speak in the post-war period.

The feminist movement, which denounced his objectification and began to backfire in 1970s.

Playboy’s relevance has been a struggle in recent years. In 2020, the magazine stopped printing printed copies. Many former Playmates also spoke out against this culture following the MeToo movement.

“Secrets of Playboy” is Hefner’s most damning portrayal to date. It includes extensive interviews with Playboy Bunnies and former associates.

Miki Garcia (ex-director of Playmate promotions) said that the program was “cult-like.” They had groomed the women and taught them to think they were part this family. He did really believe that these women were his.

“We had Playmates who overdosed or committed suicide.”

Sondra Theodore is a former actress and model who was a lover of Hefner during the 1980s.

He was very demanding of her sexual pleasures and she admitted that he scared me. He was always looking for more.

“The average group sex session was five nights per week. The protocol was established. She said that he liked to be directed and she didn’t allow him to veer off it as it could cause irritation. 

Theodore claimed that Hefner was an avid drug user. He sent her out many times to buy cocaine and the sex “broke me like you would break a horse”.

The Playboy clubs were touted as a place where sophisticated men could be in the company of their peers while being served by beautiful women in bunny outfits

Playboy clubs were a social place for sophisticated men to meet their peers, while enjoying the company and service of gorgeous women dressed in bunny costumes.

A group of Playboy Bunnies line up for inspection by Hugh Hefner in 1966 at the Playboy Mansion in Chicago

Hugh Hefner, Chicago Playboy Mansion 1966. Hugh Hefner inspection of a Playboy Bunny group 

She said, “It got ugly. I felt like a ringmaster. I had to put on the exact same show every night.” 

It was exactly the same script. “Welcome to our family. We’re welcoming you!” This was all a lie.

“I saw girl after girl, beautiful and fresh-faced, show up. We were nothing to him…

‘…he looked like a vampire. These girls were sucked dry for many decades by him.

Lisa Loving Barrett was Hefner’s executive assistant in the 1980s and 1990s. She claimed that Hefner kept a large stockpile Quaaludes. This powerful sedative is what Bill Cosby’s accusers claim he used to drug them.

Barrett stated that the Playboy mansion was home to the drug known as the “leg spreaders” and they were considered a “necessary evil” because women would do any thing they wanted.

Hefner, Barrett, and other workers at the mansion would each have their own prescriptions. Hefner would gather them all, and then keep them in a drawer in the bedroom. He would give them to any women who brought them there.

Barrett said that Hefner used small amounts of Dexedrine daily to maintain alertness.

Cocaine was an important part of the home. There was also a powderroom off the great hallway where cocaine was kept.

Theodore asserts that the drug was available so readily that one of Hefners’ poodles got addicted and would lick it from the ground.

Mixed among the newly recorded interviews with Hefner's 'staff and inner circle' is never-before-seen footage from the Playboy mansion, as well as its respective properties across the globe

In addition to the interviews recorded with Hefner’s ‘staff and inner circles’ is footage never before seen from the Playboy Mansion along with its properties throughout the world.

According to Stefan Tetenbaum (Hefner’s valet), the drugs were responsible for the terrifying ‘Pig Nights’ that took place every Thursday between 1978-81.

Hefner ordered two prostitutes to take half a dozen women with them to Sunset Strip Mansion. It was famous for its prostitution at that time.

Hefner was convinced that the women were “pigs”, but instructed his VIP male friends to refrain from calling them this, according to the film.

Before the ladies can have sex, a doctor will first check them for possible infections or diseases.

Tetenbaum explains that there was a “special woman” who would sometimes appear to him. She was called The Bleeder.

“She would draw blood from her friends with a large needle and use it to perform fellatio on them or do a job for them.”

According to the documentary, John Belushi was a frequent guest at Playboy’s mansion and he loved it so much that it would “turn him on”.

Hefner has always been a woman with multiple girlfriends. However, he began going out frequently each week with seven blondes. He claimed that all of them were dating him simultaneously in the 2000s.

Holly Madison, his “special one”, or main girlfriend, was among them. She moved in to the Playboy home at 21 years old.

Hefner offered his girlfriends and her the Quaalude on her first night together. He also said that they had been known for being ‘thigh openers’ in 1970s.

She refused, but had sex that night with him and other girls. 

“It was very robotic and mechanical, and you would follow other women’s leads.” Madison stated in the film that it was gross how Hef refused to protect herself. 

Madison says that Hefner “love bombed” her at the beginning, but then he ‘brainwashed her over time.

Playboy Bunny Holly Madison became Hefner's 'special one', or main girlfriend, and moved into the Playboy mansion aged 21 in 2000

Playboy Bunny Holly Madison was Hefner’s “special one”, or main girlfriend. Hefner moved into the Playboy mansion in 2000 at age 21.

Madison (pictured right in 2003) revealed how Hefner refused to use protection during sex and she eventually got caught up in 'cycle of gross things and I didn't know what to do'

Madison, shown right in 2003, revealed how Hefner didn’t use protection during sex. Madison was caught in the “cycle of gross and I wasn’t sure what to do”

Hefner pitted his girlfriends against each other and the plastic surgery was 'compulsive' as they tried to keep up with each other, Madison said

Hefner pitted his girlfriends up against one another and plastic surgery was a ‘compulsive,’ Madison stated. 

There was an 8pm curfew and she was forbidden from leaving Playboy Mansion except for family holidays.

Hefner also revealed that she was once mad at her for cutting her blonde hair so short.

Hefner pitted his girlfriends against one another, and the plastic surgeon was “compulsive” as they tried to keep up.

She said that her lifestyle in the mansion caused her to fall into a “cycle of gross stuff and I wasn’t sure what to do.” 

Madison confesses to feeling suicidal once in her life. However, she was able to star on the E! The reality television series The Girls Next Door restored her self-esteem.

I was scared to go. Something always lingering at the back of my mind since the very beginning,’ Madison said.

“If I went there, there were mountains of revenge porn just waiting for me to get out.

Hef would take naked photos of the girls when you were out with him. He’d print eight copies for himself and other women to pass around. This was absolutely disgusting.

“I was a heavy drinker every night that we went out. It was how I coped with it.

“The drama between myself and other women got so out of control. Imagine having sex with somebody in a room full of women who all hate you and are all talking s*** about you,’ she added. 

Jennifer Saginor was another woman who found Hefner’s experience increasingly troubling.

Sondra Theodore, a former model and actress who dated Hefner in the late 1970s and 80s, said Hefner was a prolific drug user, sending her out to buy cocaine numerous times, and the rampant sex 'broke me like you'd break a horse'

Sondra Theodore was an actress and former model who had dated Hefner between the 1970s and 1980s. Hefner was prolific in using drugs, she said, taking her to purchase cocaine multiple times and breaking my heart like a horse.

Theodore, now 65, tells how she 'watched girl after girl show up, fresh faced, adorable and their beauty just washed away' due to the toxic environment at Playboy

Theodore, who is now 65, recounts her experience of watching “girl after girl” show up with fresh faces, cute, and their beauty was just washed away by the toxic Playboy environment. 

Hefner’s daughter for over 40 years, Shefner was her mother. At the age 11 she moved to Los Angeles’ Playboy mansion.

Saginor says that Hefner thought of her as his daughter, but at 17 she became a minor and Hefner took her into his bedroom. She found Hefner there with a playmate who she loved.

Hefner attempted to convince them all to have sex, and suddenly the “energy” changed.

Saginor said, “I was like my dad’s down in the hallway.” He stated, “We’re all relatives here.”

Saginor called the Playmate ‘Kendall.’ She broke down and ran to the restroom, ending the meeting abruptly.

Saginor claimed that Hefner requested that she not speak about it years later in a book that she had written about her childhood.

He claimed that she got all the media interviews she had to do canceled because he was angry about her speaking out.

According to the documentary, Hefner had a stockpile of Quaaludes, the powerful sedative which Bill Cosby's accusers claimed he drugged them with, which he referred to as 'leg spreaders'

According to the documentary, Hefner had a stockpile of Quaaludes, the powerful sedative which Bill Cosby’s accusers claimed he drugged them with, which he referred to as ‘leg spreaders’ 

Saginor explains in the series that while he was raised to believe it was fine to have opinions, he also learned that loyalty was a prerequisite for belonging within this circle.

“There was a certain level of fear that there would be consequences for breaking this loyalty.

Saginor claimed it was too hypocritical, given Hefner was an advocate for free speech and the First Amendment his entire life.

Hefner’s sexual passions sometimes turned into more sinister territory with his dogs, according to the documentary.

“I entered once, and he was there.” [gestures with hand]Theodore replied, “To our dog,” 

“I asked you what your doing?” He stated that dogs need to be fed. That was unacceptable! He never got to be left with us again. 

Linda Lovelace was subject to a more alarming incident when she visited the Playboy Mansion. She was made into an orgy by Hefner’s male friends.

Former Playboy Bunny Mom PJ Masten stated that ‘all the men were laughing when she got out the limousine. The woman was drunk and had been drugged.

“All of a sudden, a German Shepherd appears out of the blue. The German Shepherd made her do oral sex after she got so upset. Do you want to discuss depravity and cruelty? This is absolutely unacceptable!

His former valet says Hefner lived his life at the mansion like he was a 'king' and didn't even want to know the names of his staff

According to his former valet, Hefner treated the mansion as if it were a palace and did not want the names of the staff.

Russell Miller was an author and critic who published a book on Playboy in 1985. He said that the sordid acts “exemplifies” Hefner’s treatment of women.

Miller stated, “This is the dark underbelly Playboy,” 

Playboy clubs were conceived as places where men of high standing could meet their peers and be served by lovely women dressed in bunny clothes.

However, beneath the facade of glamour was the ugly truth. Celebrities and VIPs could escape with any kind of thing.

Each club had its own ‘cleanup crew,’ who handled embarrassing situations without calling the police.

Masten claims Don Cornelius’ incident was her worst nightmare and Hefner knew everything about it.

Cornelius met two younger sisters, aged 21 and 20, at one of the clubs. Cornelius invited them to his home.

Masten explained that Don had been to the club many times and many people knew him well enough not to be afraid.

The two girls, both young and in their teens, got in the Rolls Royce of his father and headed to his home. Three days passed without any contact from them. We couldn’t find their whereabouts.

Hefner had cameras in every room and even in the garden outside where there were hidden microphones

Hefner used cameras to record every space and the outside garden, which had hidden microphones.

Dark side: A&E will explore the darker sides of Hugh Hefner's Playboy empire in the forthcoming docuseries Secrets Of Playboy

Dark side: A&E will explore the darker sides of Hugh Hefner’s Playboy empire in the forthcoming docuseries Secrets Of Playboy

They were kept apart, with one being locked away in one place and the other another in another. They were tied and bound.

“The sister could hear the other sister screaming. She could see her sister’s other side being brutalized and saw wooden objects. It was terrible.

The incident was not reported to police by the Bunny mother, but one of the girls did manage to call her Bunny mom. 

Masten claimed that Cornelius had never been suspended from his privileges and that he was back at club the next week. 

Tetenbaum was the former valet who claimed that Hefner treated the mansion as if it were a palace and did not want his staff to be named.

Hefner would drink around 40 Pepsis daily and ate 2lbs to 3lbs of M&Ms a day, he said. 

He kept all of his’sexual apparatus’ (dildoss, nipple clips. whips. and straps) in the headboard.

Tetenbaum could be asked to remove all sex toys left after an organization, and then put them in a special bucket.

Hefner kept cameras in all rooms and in the gardens, where hidden microphones were placed.

Jennifer Saginor, the daughter of Hefner's doctor, began living at the mansion at age 11. She recalls how Hefner regarded her as his 'daughter' but when she was 17 - still a minor - Hefner called her to his bedroom

Jennifer Saginor (the daughter of Hefner’s doctor) began living in the mansion as a 11-year-old. She recalls Hefner treating her like a ‘daughter’, but that when she turned 17 Hefner invited her to his bedroom. 

'Secrets of Playboy, a 10-part docuseries, will delve into the 'dark underbelly' of Playboy on A&E on January 24

‘Secrets of Playboy, a 10-part docuseries, will delve into the ‘dark underbelly’ of Playboy on A&E on January 24

Theodore stated that Hefner had invited prominent journalists to play at the Playboy house ‘on purpose’ in order to record them.

She stated that they end up regretting something and that he has it in him so when anything comes out negatively, he will say “I don’t believe so”.

Theodore suggests that Hefner’s attitude toward women may have been influenced by Charles Manson. Charles Manson was a disturbed source. Charles Manson had female followers who lived with Hefner on the ranch. They were later tried together for murder.

Theodore says in the movie: “When we began dating in 1970s, he (Hefner), was obsessed and fascinated by Charles Manson.

“Couldn’t stop talking about him. These women, who were in prison for so many years but never got out because they had a chance to escape jail, still love this man and will continue loving him until their last breath. Hef enjoyed that.

Sharmagne Leland St. John Sylbert says that Hefner was a Playboy photographer who had copies of Manson home videos.

They were made before the murders of the girls at the ranch with knives and guns, she said.

Theodore stated that there were many similarities in Hefner’s use of coercive control.

She stated, “The way that the girls followed every instruction he gave us made us all happy.”

“He said, “If we could all get along with each other, then we would be together for ever.”

Secrets of Playboy will air on A&E on January 24, 2022.