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Maxim Cover Star Photographed With the Mag's Owner

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Photo: Maxim/Facebook

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Maxim has been trying to shed its lad mag reputation over the past year, but this latest bit of news sends the magazine in the wrong directionPage Six reports that while model Alessandra Ambrosio was shooting her December cover shoot for the magazine, its owner Sardar Biglari stuck around the set in Monte Carlo for the entirety of the shoot. What's really irritated Ambrosio is that Biglari, whose company Biglari Holdings owns Maxim, reportedly requested to have a photo taken of him with the model that was not supposed to run in the magazine, but did anyway.

"That's not going to run, right?" she asked Maxim's fashion director Wayne Gross after the photo was taken, according to Page Six's source. She was apparently guaranteed that it would not make it into the magazine. According to the source, the Victoria's Secret model "was creeped out by Biglari." It's also rumored that Bilgari spent the next couple weeks bragging about the photo shoot.

Ambrosio's spokesperson told Page Six that she was happy with the cover photo, but when asked about the picture with Biglari said, "We have no comment on that." Coming to Bilgari's defense is the shoot's photographer Gilles Bensimon, who said via a press release, "In absolutely no way did the described situation occur."

It's possible that the photo made its way into the magazine during the leadership transition. Lanphear was no longer around to oversee the photo selection and Maxim's new leader Glenn O'Brien was not in yet. Page Six reports that Bilgari Holdings handled the December issue.

Rumored fights over photos is not the only thing Bilgari has brought to the magazine, though. Maxim's cover now features the owner's signature just below the logo in the top left and will continue to into the future, a spokesperson told Page Six.

Update: The New York Post altered its account, removing any mention that Ambrosio "was creeped out" during the shoot from the story. (The paper did not make note of the amendment in a December 11th published story that Biglari is suing former Maxim fashion director Wayne Gross for breach of contract and defamation.)