Lennon was art breaker

 

Art attack … (l-r) tycoon Hefner, a Matisse and Lennon
Lennon picture: REX

By PETE SAMSON

PLAYBOY tycoon HUGH HEFNER has revealed how drunken JOHN LENNON stubbed out a ciggie on a valuable painting at his mansion.

Hefner had to stop his pals walloping the Beatle after he vandalised the picture by Henri Matisse — whose work fetches up to £8MILLION.

The incident happened during a wild LA party in 1974.

Hefner, 80, said: “He was separated briefly from his wife YOKO ONO and was in a very bad mood.

“He was drinking a great deal. He misbehaved a little bit and a couple of my friends took exception to it.

*

“He put a cigarette out on a Matisse and one of my friends was going to kick his butt. But he’d been drinking.

“He was under tremendous pressure. And Lennon was one of my heroes.”

Lennon — shot dead in New York in 1980 — was not the only Beatle to party there.

Hefner said RINGO STARR was a regular.

Asked if they got lucky with the Playmates, he replied: “I’d be surprised if they didn’t.”

p.samson@the-sun.co.uk

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