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Not Exactly a Get-Rich-Quick Scheme

March 6, 2008 3:41 PM

The FX con-artist dramedy “The Riches” is teaming up with eBay in a confusing, if altruistic, publicity gambit.

Viewers are invited to bid on a prize package that includes $100,000 in cash, with auction proceeds going to Oxfam America, the charity of choice of “Riches” star Minnie Driver. Also included are lunch with Ms. Driver, a season-one DVD box set and an “authentic prop” from the set of the show.

The press release invites bidders to go as high as $5, $10, even $25,000 for “a chance at attaining the American dream, without any of the con-artist consequences,” all “while making a difference.”

So why not just give $100,000 to Oxfam and auction off the swag and the meal with matchstick man manqué Minnie? FX marketing Executive VP Stephanie Gibbons explained that the chance to buy lots of money with lots of money “could be the deal of a lifetime for someone.”

Someone, that is, whose $25,000 bid can be authenticated, and whose “American dream” includes a faux date and a ski mask smeared with Eddie Izzard’s mascara.

The charity auction is featured at www.eBay.com/TheRiches from March 13-23.

— Julieanne Smolinski


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