In THE PEOPLE VS LARRY FLYNT, Larry Flynt (Woody Harrelson) plays the infamous pornographer. In the early 1970s, Flynt owns a strip club in Cincinnati. As a way to drum up more business for the struggling club, Flynt begins publishing a "newsletter" featuring nude photos of the women who dance there. It doesn't take long for Flynt to turn this into Hustler Magazine, and gains a growing "readership" and notoriety for publishing nude photos of Jacqueline Onassis and more explicit photos of women eschewed by the other "men's magazines" like Playboy. During this time, Flynt gets to know one of the strippers in his club, Alethia (Courtney Love), who shares his passion for free love and wild living. As the magazine continues to grow in circulation, local "family values" crusaders like Charles Keating (James Cromwell) decide that it's time to shut down Hustler for violating the standards of the community. Flynt is arrested, presents the beginnings of his outright mockery of courtroom justice, and while out on bail, is represented by the lawyer Alan Isaacman (Edward Norton), who prides himself on being a First Amendment champion, even as he is, on a personal level, repulsed by the content of Hustler. After a stint in prison and another obscenity trial in Georgia, Flynt and Isaacman are shot by a would-be assassin, leaving Flynt paralyzed from the waist-down. Demoralized and addicted to prescription drugs with Alethia, Flynt finds a way to quit drugs cold-turkey after an expensive surgery helps remove the pain he feels. Vowing to use his brain more now that he's paralyzed in the areas he used more often when making editorial decisions for Hustler, Flynt takes a more active role in the editorial side of things. This culminates in presenting the FBI surveillance video of the arrest of carmaker John DeLorean during a cocaine deal, which lands Flynt back in court with the government demanding to know how he obtained the video. Soon after, Flynt comes up with a parody Campari ad in which televangelist Jerry Falwell reminisces about having sex with his mother in an outhouse. This lands Flynt in his biggest trouble yet; Falwell sues him for millions, and the case goes all the way to the Supreme Court. In the highest court in the land, Isaacman must show that while Flynt, a self-described "scumbag," deserves the same rights to free speech as anyone else, and to silence his voice would create a chilling effect that could silence editorial cartoonists, opinion columnists, and anyone who might say something that a public official might take offense to.