Paul Leslie Snider
April 15, 1951
|Died||August 14, 1980 (aged 29)|
|Cause of death||Suicide by gunshot|
|Resting place||Schara Tzedeck Cemetery, New Westminster, British Columbia|
Dorothy Stratten (m. 1979)
Paul Leslie Snider (April 15, 1951 – August 14, 1980) was a Canadian man who was one of the creators of the male stripping act the Chippendales. He was the estranged husband and manager of Playboy model Dorothy Stratten, whom he raped and murdered the day he killed himself.
Snider was born in Vancouver, British Columbia to Jewish parents. By the mid-1970s, he was a night-club promoter and erstwhile pimp. In 1977, Snider met Dorothy Stratten at a Vancouver-area Dairy Queen, where she was working part-time while still attending high school, and romanced her. In 1979, he sent professionally taken nude photographs of Stratten to Playboy magazine, and she was chosen as a Playmate for the month of August of that year. Snider and Stratten moved to Los Angeles and were married on June 1 in Las Vegas.
While Stratten worked as a bunny at the Century City Playboy Club and was cast in a few television and film roles, Snider had numerous get-rich-quick schemes, including building and selling exercise benches. Stratten helped support Snider financially throughout their short-lived marriage (as he was a Canadian with no working visa, and was not allowed an income within the U.S.). In 1979, Snider partnered with Somen Banerjee and attorney Bruce Nahin to form what would become the male strip club format of Chippendales.
In 1980, Stratten was named Playboy's Playmate of the Year and was cast in a motion picture, They All Laughed (1981) directed by Peter Bogdanovich, with whom she began an affair. Stratten and Snider separated and he hired a private investigator to follow her.
On August 14, 1980, Stratten, aged twenty, was shot and killed in the West Los Angeles house they had shared. Snider's body was found next to hers. Police believed he raped and murdered her, sexually abused the corpse, then killed himself with the same shotgun.
In popular culture
Snider has been portrayed in two films. The first one was a made-for-television movie about the murder called Death of a Centerfold: The Dorothy Stratten Story (1981), which starred Jamie Lee Curtis as Stratten and Bruce Weitz as Snider. Bob Fosse's feature film Star 80 (1983) dramatized Stratten's life and death. Mariel Hemingway played Stratten and Eric Roberts portrayed Snider in a highly acclaimed performance.
- Carpenter, Theresa (November 5, 1980). "Death of a Playmate" (PDF). The Village Voice. Retrieved July 15, 2014.
- Vargas, Theresa (September 29, 2017). "Hugh Hefner, the murder of Dorothy Stratten and the dark side of Playboy". Washington Post. Retrieved 18 December 2017.
- Canby, Vincent (November 10, 1983). "Screen: 'Star 80,' a Sex-Symbol's Life and Death". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 May 2009.