Show Business: The Lampoon Goes Hollywood

America's only adult humor magazine is now a comedy empire

Eight years ago, three newly graduated Harvard Lampoon editors had a wild and crazy idea: Why not start the first modern national humor magazine for American adults? They took the idea to a middle-aged entrepreneur—the publisher of Weight Watchers magazine, no less—and National Lampoon was born. The rest is history, or if not history, then at least hilarity.

Today National Lampoon, the brainchild of Douglas Kenney, Henry Beard and Robert Hoffman, is a show-biz empire of comedy. Not only has the magazine been a...

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