Gloria "Gail" Leonard was born in New York City, is currently single after three trips to the altar, and single-handedly raised a now-married daughter who owns a prestigious art gallery. She has traveled in many circles and counts among her many friends and acquaintances Ted Turner, Norman Mailer, Buck Henry, Robin Leach, Roseanne and Larry King.
Ms. Leonard's reign throughout her fourteen-year stint as the top dog or Head Publisher of High Society Magazine put her into the forefront of the media powerhouse and into the who is who of media print amongst peers. She braved new trails and pioneered both the publishing of "celebrity skin" (Margot Kidder, Ann-Margret and Barbara Streisand all tried to sue) and the controversial concept of phone sex (quite simply the top vixen of voice), ultimately fighting all the way to The Supreme Court enduring a severely biased jury which ultimately ruled in her favor! Gloria knew no restraint when it came to fighting for the life she set forth. No activist at leisure Gloria took charge and campaigned for personal rights, freedoms of many liberties we all hold true today and a true voice within the clouded world of red tape beaurocratic governmental challenges. Gloria never would turn down an opportunity or venue to voice her convictions to the masses, she would not be censored, stood up, turned down or silenced in any matter concerning her liberties. With Gloria at the controls, High Society became one of the best selling newsstand magazines in America. Gloria will forever be a devoted feminist and First Amendment activist. She has lectured and debated extensively on the issues of censorship, pornography and the effect on the women's movement at dozens of colleges and university campuses. She has served as President of the Adult Film Association of America, the Administrative Director of the Adult Video Association and sat on the Board of Directors of the Free Speech Coalition.
"I started supervising layouts, shoots… writing a lion's share of the copy, including cover lines… I went out on the road and visited many of our wholesalers… There were 400-500…They in turn distributed to the retail level… I met with everyone from the truck drivers to the company principals… I examined bulk records to see how many copies an agency was getting…how many magazines they were returning. I did four to seven media interviews a day at times, depending on what High Society wanted to promote".
During the early '80s, Gloria Leonard almost produced the first million dollar porno. "It was during my tenure as Publisher of High Society Magazine," the FSC President writes to me, "I had terrific relationships with many of the magazine wholesalers/distributors of the day - a group came to me wanting to fund the first million dollar porn movie. I actually tried talking them out of the idea, explaining that I could produce ten excellent money-makers for that much dough but they wanted to go ahead anyway. Attempting to anticipate what might be the one element which would bring theatre goers of all stripes to see such a movie, I hit on the idea of having a well-known author write the screenplay. Norman Mailer and I had appeared on a talk show together and developed a friendship - I invited him to lunch and explained the project I had in mind. I was even willing to buy rights to an already existing property he had written - about Marilyn Monroe. He was more than receptive to the idea and wanted to do something original. Although his price was high, it would have still left more than enough for a big budget feature! The problem at the time was that he was completing his tome, "Ancient Evenings" with a commitment for a Broadway play immediately thereafter. We would have to wait for close to a year but were thrilled at the prospect of having one of America's foremost literary figures create an adult movie. However, deals such as they tend to be, started to fray around the edges and regrettably, it never came to pass - for a variety of reasons. Interestingly, a few years later, as they were turning his book "Tough Guys Don't Dance" into a movie (which turned out to be a big bomb) he called me to read for one of the principal parts and though he thought I was terrific (and I was), the part went to Francis Fisher (Clint Eastwood's ex). Just as well - no one went to see it anyway!"
Gloria Leonard continued to perform in hardcore throughout the 80's, finally retiring from the screen in the early 90's. Gloria Leonard's sexy and stately career was just one of many irons she had in the fire, but Gloria Leonard never turned in a performance that was anything less than sensual and utterly passionate. Gloria Leonard continues to speak out on behalf of the porn industry whenever she gets a chance. Gloria Leonard currently spends most of her time living near the beach on the secluded tropical island where she resides. Gloria Leonard's a member of both the XRCO and AVN Halls of Fame.
Of recent days December 2007 has led this vixen of venture to into
modern day theatrical reenactments of past day Adult Cinema classic
“The opening of Misty Beethoven” in Los Angeles with costars being
Constance Money, Jamie Gillis, Jacqueline Beaudant, Terri Hall, Ras
Kean and Casey Donovan.