I was recently reading people getting mad that Chewbacca Mom has made so much money and is charging for autographs, and when I looked at it, based on what is reported, she hasn’t made much. The money US Magazine is claiming she’s made involve:
- $3000 from Kohls
- $7500 from talk shows
- $7500 Disney World Vacation
- $2000 VIP passes to the Fan Expo Dallas
- $400,000 college scholarships for her entire family
Figured I’d break that down – she’s made $10,500 in cash. $9,500 in goods she’s taxed on but can’t sell. $400,000 worth of college that probably doesn’t include room and board and probably is not taxable.
Let’s look at the tax – probably 25% is a reasonable estimate, so she owes $2,625 to the IRS on the cash, and $2,375 on gift tax. So $5000 of her money’s going right to the IRS if she accepts those gifts.
I did a little research on the college and that $400,000 is good for five people to go through but probably doesn’t cover room, board, books, food… which are listed currently as 12K a year per kid. Figure two of them go there, she needs to come up with $96K to have them live there for a four year degree.
Should they want to skip living there they can do online degrees, but course materials (and food) are still a large chunk of that $96k
That’s if the kids want to go. In 15 years. When staying there will probably be $172,890 based on 4% inflation, meaning she only has to come up with $11.5k a year for two kids to go to college.
So looking at a 15 year plan with two kids going to college this year I’m looking at her being in the negative by $6,000 based on that what she’s getting isn’t cash and costs in terms of taxes.
People are freaking out she’s charging a lot for autographs. A lot. She’s got 15 minutes, fame that’s probably currently cost her $167K over the course of 15 years, and probably isn’t working a lot while she’s out making those mad Chewbacca Mask dollars.
Too bad all of these people are being forced at gunpoint to go stand in line to pay to get her autograph.