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Magazine Launches Czechoslovak Edition

April 25, 1991

PRAGUE, Czechoslovakia (AP) _ Playboy magazine, once a symbol of decadent America, is now being touted as a milestone for the post-Communist age.

″The fact that I can publish Playboy magazine here is, for me, the ultimate proof of our freedom,″ said former filmmaker Vlado Tichy, 42, the publisher of the new Czechoslovak edition.

Tichy said he hoped to help rectify the ″distorted vision″ following more than four decades of Communist rule.

At $3.20 a copy, the Czechoslovak Playboy is by far the most expensive magazine in the country. But Tichy was optimistic about its future.

″We want to be the Rolls Royce among similar magazines and the price for a ride must reflect such ambition,″ Tichy said Wednesday.

Sarka Lukesova, a 21-year-old student and first Czech centerfold model, was more cautious about her future.

″I don’t see a career in this yet,″ she said after returning from a two- week trip to Chicago, where she posed for a fee of $3,200.

″I’d rather stick to ethnography and get my degree in the meantime,″ she explained.

Founded by Hugh Hefner in 1953, the magazine sells under license in countries as diverse as Turkey and Japan with a global circulation of 5.1 million.

Playboy debuted in neighboring Hungary in December. Publishers there have not released sales figures.

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