|Born||Paul Leslie Snider
April 15, 1951
Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
|Died||August 14, 1980
West Los Angeles, California
|Cause of death||Suicide by gunshot|
|Resting place||Schara Tzedeck Cemetery|
|Spouse(s)||Dorothy Stratten (m. 1979)|
Paul Leslie Snider (April 15, 1951 – August 14, 1980) was the estranged husband and manager of Playboy model Dorothy Stratten, whom he murdered the day he killed himself. He was previously notable as one of the creators of the male stripping act the Chippendales.
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 he romanced her. In 1979 he sent professionally taken nude photographs of Stratten to Playboy magazine, and she was chosen as a monthly Playmate for August of that year. Snider and Stratten moved to Los Angeles and were married that June in Las Vegas.
While Stratten worked as a bunny at the Century City Playboy Club and got a few television and film roles, Snider had sundry money-making 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 had been cast in a major motion picture, They All Laughed 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, age twenty, was killed with a shotgun blast to the face in the West Los Angeles house they had shared. Snider's body was found next to hers. Police believed he raped and murdered her, 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.
- Theresa Carpenter (1980-11-05). "Death of a Playmate" (PDF). The Village Voice. Retrieved 2014-07-15.
- Canby, Vincent (November 10, 1983). "Screen: 'Star 80,' a Sex-Symbol's Life and Death". The New York Times. Retrieved 2 May 2009.