By CBSLA Staff

LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 30: Author Larry Flynt attends the 16th Annual Los Angeles Times Festival of Books – Day 1 at USC on April 30, 2011 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by David Livingston/Getty Images)

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA/AP) – Larry Flynt, the controversial pornographer and founder of Hustler magazine, died in Los Angeles Wednesday morning. He was 78.

Brother Jimmy Flynt told The Associated Press that Flynt died of heart failure at his Hollywood Hills home in Los Angeles.

Jimmy Flynt said his uncle had been in frail health and died of heart failure.

Known for launching Hustler magazine in the mid-70s and later expanding to Hustler TV, Flynt was one of the more visible figures in the porn industry for over five decades.

As founder of one of the most explicit adult-oriented magazines, Flynt constantly challenged the establishment and became a target for the religious right and feminist groups.

His varied legal battles involving free speech and adult entertainment were depicted in the Academy Award-nominated 1996 film “The People vs. Larry Flynt” starring Woody Harrelson and Courtney Love.

His publishing and financial successes were offset by tragedy. He was shot by a sniper and left paralyzed from the waist down in 1978.

(Copyright 2021 CBS Corp. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)