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Most Famous Photog Ever -- Imagine Losing It All

9/6/2009 11:15 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF

In the world of high-end photography, Annie Leibovitz's portfolio is the equivalent of The Beatles' catalog -- and she's in danger of losing it all.

Annie Leibovitz, John Lennon, Yoko Ono

Leibovitz, who took the infamous last photo of John Lennon before he was assassinated, is facing catastrophic financial problems -- if she doesn't pay back a $24 million loan by Tuesday, she'll lose the rights to every big photo she's ever taken. The list includes that controversial Miley Cyrus photo from last year, the pregnant Demi Moore Vanity Fair cover, the cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Born to Run" -- and really every interesting VF cover for the last 20 years or so.

In classic Michael Jackson-esque form, Leibovitz sunk deep into debt and then got a loan using her photo catalog (estimated at $40 million) and homes as collateral.

Tuesday is D-Day.


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sorry but my mom who has worked for 40 years of her life in an office being beat down by being on her feet and not being able to be with her family much, just lost her retirement because the company claimed bankrupt, so feeling sorry for another idiot who gets money for doing a "talent" get more in a day then my mom who works her ass off will get in her lifetime, they loss it or get to greedy and the taxpayer in the end has to pay for it due to the goverment paying for their greed mistake. No sympathy none. More like anger and resentment.

1881 days ago

who gives a shit    

Why oh why do you put that picture up of John & Yoko? It has to be the worst pic she has taken. We don't want to see a naked John kissing Yoko! Yuck!!! And as for Annie, join the rest of the countryl You make big bucks for taking pictures and you got yourself into hock, cry me a river, boo hoo!!!

1881 days ago

Wanda W.    

If she was/is that deep in debt because she put all that up for collateral, and couldnt pay that size of a loan back,she deserves to lose it all. Greed is never pretty folks. And the rich SHOULD KNOW BETTER. No sympathy whatsoever here.

1881 days ago


Annie Leibovitz DID NOT shoot the cover of Born to Run...
it was Eric Meola.

I sell rock photos for a living and this is a well known fact. It's one of Meola's most famous photo shoots to date.

1881 days ago

dr fred    

someone please explain how her pictures look good?????????
the Yoko/ John picture is so offensive & disgusting...

Gee, i can go take a picture of some filthy nude homeless person kissing a pig would look about the same & then I get $$$$$$$$$

1881 days ago

dr fred    

how about taking a picture of a celebrity taking a big crap???
that would be just as nice as any picture I have seen by lebo lesbo has taken....

or how about a celebrity giving birth with blood & tissue everwhere


1881 days ago


I hope you aren't suggesting that just because some super-duper rich person decided not to make sound financial decisions we're supposed to feel sorry for her. Welcome to the real world Annie.

1881 days ago


Personally, both John and Yoko were equally unattractive and had nothing to offer that I wanted. If I owned that photo it would have been sold to pay the debt in the first place. An fugly man kissing a fuglier woman, no big deal.

1881 days ago


Wow, she must really be having a bad week. Because Sky news just broke the story that she is being sued by an Italian phtography, for using two of his photographs without permission. He is sueing her for copyright infringement and is asking for $300,000 (£183,000) as compensation. So sad because her creative work is amazing : )

1881 days ago


that's one of the worst photographs ever.

1881 days ago


I LOVE this photo. One of my favorites. It's beautiful to see such adoration. They loved each other so much. I love how he's wrapped around her, almost as if he can't get close enough. He must have felt so safe in love with her...he's naked, exposed, vulnerable and still fearless in his love and desire for her. Just wonderful.

1881 days ago


Her photo, while taken on the day John Lennon died, were not the last photos of John before he was shot. There were several (less than 10) photographs taken of John outside the Dakota about 4 hours prior to his death, including the infamous photo of John autographing an album for his killer.

1881 days ago


Ouch,That was an unnecesary stab at Michael Jackson.

She did some good photoshoots of him, btw.

1881 days ago

yer mom's soo effin hot!!    

her portfolio, and in particular this photo here are her personal (and possibly collective) guide book to: how to murder and utterly destroy christian idols. i heart you've done sooo fantastically over the centuries. maybe more.

1881 days ago


Oh please, it wasn't the estate taxes. Those laws don't protect straight people either. It was the 3 NYC townhouses, the Paris apartment and the ridiculously lavish lifestyle that did her in. She mortgaged her photos to live the high life, believing that no one would ever call in the loan. And now that she can't pay she wants the courts to protect her portfolio. Well times are tough all over Annie, so pay up and start over while you still can.

1881 days ago
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