Playboy: Sex Stars of the Year

Playboy: Sex Stars of the Year <br />1969-1979

The Rialto Report recently celebrated our fourth birthday, and so we thought it would be a good moment to take a brief step outside of the bubble of golden age XXX films, and look at what was happening to the depiction of sex in mainstream films over the same period.

Who were the sex stars of the 1970s? How seriously was their work being taken? And how well do their films measure up today?

Starting in 1969, Playboy magazine ran an annual article every December selecting the ‘Sex Stars’ of that year.

The series was enlightening on two fronts:

Firstly, it chronicled the increased sexual permissiveness in mainstream films, with films like ‘Last Tango in Paris’ (1972) receiving more and more attention with the general public.

But secondly, the articles also treated explicit sex films side by side with their Hollywood counterparts, thus fueling the idea that the two streams would perhaps eventually merge into one. Jamie Gillis, Serena, Jennifer Welles, and Harry Reems shared the same space as Raquel Welch, Warren Beatty, and Jack Nicholson.

Interestingly however, as the decade moved forward, the Playboy articles started cooling on this notion, with the initial enthusiasm for XXX films waning and being ultimately replaced by a blissful ignorance of the existence of hard core movies.

Ironically this coincided with a time when some of the best adult films were being made, by filmmakers such as Radley Metzger, Alex de Renzy and Anthony Spinelli. With hindsight it seems as if the novelty of the concept of real sex on film was perhaps more interesting to the world than the actual quality of the films.

(As a bonus we’ve also included the October 1971 article from Playboy, ‘The Porno Girls’ – one of the first detailed portrayals of the emerging sex film industry in a high-circulation magazine.)


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1969:
Including –

  • Raquel Welch, Vanessa Redgrave, Brigitte Bardot
  • Julie Christie, Jane Fonda, Julie Newmar
  • Ewa Aulin, Daniele Gaubert, Erica Gavin
  • Anna Gael, Tina Aumont, Senta Berger


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1970:


Including –

  • Jacqueline Bisset, Jane Fonda, Candice Bergen
  • Catherine Deneuve, Ursula Andress, Stella Stevens
  • Clint Eastwood, Sidney Poitier, Warren Weatty
  • Cynthia Myers, Edy Williams, Julie Ege



(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – The Porno Girls – 1971:


Including –

  • Mary Rexroth, Maria Arnold, Laura Cannon
  • Cindy Hopkins / Susannah Fields
  • Emily Smith, Helen Lang
  • Jayme Collins, Jaqueline Martin


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1971:


Including –

  • Anne-Margret, Candice Bergen, Ali MacGraw
  • Karen Black, Julie Christie, Elke Sommer
  • Melvin Van Peebles, Richard Roundtree
  • Claudia Jennings, Sue Bernard, Victoria Vetri


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1972:


Including –

  • Dominique Sanda, Cybill Shepherd, Susan George
  • Barbara Hershey, Victoria Principal
  • Burt Reynolds, Clint Eastwood, James Caan
  • Cheri Caffaro, Christiane Kruger, Tina Herazo


(click on cover to view article)


 Playboy – Sex Stars of 1973:


Including –

  • Jane Seymour, Faye Dunaway, Dyan Cannon
  • Gloria Hendry, Sally Kellerman, Pam Grier
  • Marlon Brando, Al Pacino, Robert Redford
  • Linda Lovelace, Marilyn Chambers


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1974:


Including –

  • Angie Dickinson, Charlotte Rampling
  • Candice Bergen, Laura Antonelli
  • Jeff Bridges, Charles Bronson, Roger Moore
  • Linda Lovelace, John Holmes, Marilyn Chambers



(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1975:


Including –

  • Valerie Perrine, Goldie Hawn, Maria Schneider
  • Sylvia Kristel, Susan Blakely, Brenda Sykes
  • Michael York, Don Johnson, Ken Norton
  • Jean Jennings, Brigitte Maier, Barbara Bourbon


(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1976:


Including –

  • Isabelle Adjani, Barbara Carrera, Misty Rowe
  • Saran Miles, Margaux Hemingway
  • Kris Kristofferson, Jack Nicholson, David Bowie
  • Marilyn Chambers, Harry Reems



(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1977:


Including –

  • Farrah Fawcett-Majors, Valerie Perrine,
  • Barbra Streisand, Susan Dey, Melanie Griffith
  • Sylvester Stallone, Rudolf Nureyev, John Travolta
  • Jennifer Welles, John Holmes, Harlee McBride



(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1978:


Including –

  • Brooke Shields, Suzanne Somers, Cheryl Tiegs
  • Barbara Bach, Margot Kidder, Jaclyn Smith
  • John Travolta, Jon Voigt, Chevy Chase
  • Serena, Jamie Gillis, Carol Connors



(click on cover to view article)


Playboy – Sex Stars of 1979:


Including –

  • Laura Antonelli, Cheryl Ladd, Nastassja Kinski
  • Corrine Clery, Leslie-Anne Down, Sydne Rome
  • Richard Gere, Sylvester Stallone,
  • Bo Derek, Colleen Camp, Miss Peggy


  • Posted On: 5th March 2017
  • By: The Rialto Report
  • Under: Photos


  1. Marianne · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Fascinating context to the rest of the materials on this much-loved site.
    It’s interesting to see who seriously adult films were taken in the beginning…….

  2. anon · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Love the flip-books – any chance of further magazines being added to this collection>??

  3. Luke Reilly · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Never get enough of seeing the vintage magazines. Another great job by all at the Rialto Report. Thanks for posting

  4. Jimmy · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Some familiar faces here and it’s interesting to see them when they were considered SEX STARS!

    e.g. Karen Black, Cybil Shepard

  5. Aussie Chris Raleigh · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Of course I have a copy of the 1975 with the one ☝️ & only true godness of the 70s Barbara Bourbon

  6. tm · March 5, 2017 Reply

    Just excellent! Thanks!

  7. tim · March 11, 2017 Reply

    Really like that pic of Linda Lovlace – very sexy!

  8. Robert Helmer · April 13, 2017 Reply

    I have just finished listening to the Jennifer wells interview what a great story and the life she`s had . This is real closer for her fans out there. This is all we want to hear from stars out there is they are happy and doing well. Thats way after all these years the fans just want to whats happen to the gold ages stars they may have known are just getting to know now with web sites like this one . Thank you guys for all the work you put into this. I am still waiting on some news anything on Taylor and Brooke young the teenage twins they should be in their late 50`s now

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