Hugh Hefner: Lindsay Lohan’s nude Playboy shoot is her “born again beginning”

Publisher insists that troubled star's nude shoot is intended as a career turnaround

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There are many theories about the best way to help someone who’s fallen on hard times: counselling, therapy, perhaps even just lending them a shoulder to cry on.

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But according to Playboy figurehead Hugh Hefner, one way to turn a troubled individual’s life around is to photograph them naked.

The 85-year-old publisher gave an interview this week about Lindsay Lohan’s recent photo session for Playboy, saying that her appearance on the magazine’s cover was intended as a new beginning for the actress.

Lohan, 25, is currently on probation for a drink-driving offence and was described by the ageing lothario as someone who is “carrying around some serious luggage.”

“This is a born-again beginning for Lindsay,” he told US publication People magazine.

But despite his apparent concern, Hef claimed he insisted that Li-Lo should appear naked in the pages of Playboy, saying: “Some of the people around her said, ‘No, no, no, I don’t want her nude.’

“And I said, ‘No, this is how it’s going to be. This is how it is.'”

Hefner attempted to justify the shoot, saying: “Historically, Playboy pictorials are connected to celebrities at various times in their career.

“Sometimes it’s the beginning of their career and sometimes it comes at a particular moment – as with Lindsay – that is intended as a turnaround.”

The Mean Girls star was reportedly paid $1m to re-create a famous nude pose by Marilyn Monroe for the magazine, and Hefner insists that the issue featuring her pictorial is currently breaking sales records.

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Lindsay Lohan’s acting career has been hampered for the past few years owing to a string of legal difficulties and stints in rehab.