According to the New York Post, the going rate for the reality show's castoffs, finalists and winners ranges from pocket change to big bucks. It all depends on whether you want them to sing their little hearts out or just show up and pretend they care.
So who makes the most? Ruben Studdard gets anywhere from $30K-$75K for three songs; Taylor Hicks sells his soul for $150K; and Kelly Clarkson is worth $300K. Meanwhile, a lowly castoff like Kimberly Caldwell -- wait, who? -- only charges $2,000.
Thanks for Nothing, Ed Norton
There'll be no swanky swag at the Oscars or Golden Globes, courtesy of altruistic Edward Norton. The awards have scrapped giving out gift bags -- which are usually worth up to $100K -- because the actor complained so much, and the IRS got wind of the extent of the freebies. Norton tells New York magazine: "Picking through $35,000 gift baskets is disgusting and shameful. My suggestion was to have the Academy commit to [charitable] contributions in the name of the winners." Yeah, right. Look for Ed sitting alone during this year's festivities.
Martha Dishes Dirt With Stern
How does he do it? Howard Stern had Martha Stewart talking dirty during his show last week. The usually stuffy domestic diva told Stern she owns a $1,200 vibrator, which she called "a very good tool," reports the New York Post. She also dished on her short-lived relationships with New York mayor Michael Bloomberg and actor Anthony Hopkins. "I couldn't get past the Lechter thing," she said. "Do you want someone eating your brain while you are sitting in your beautiful dining room in Maine?" Fair enough.
Party Favors: Steven Spielberg and Christy Turlington Team Up for Fashion Show ... "Apprentice" Champ and E! News Reporter Engaged ... Michael Jackson's Japanese VIP Party
Steven Spielberg is jumping on the reality TV bandwagon. The Oscar-winning director is developing a show about the fashion world featuring supermodel Christy Turlington ... PEOPLE reports "Apprentice" winner Bill Rancic and E! News' Giuliana DePandi are engaged. The couple met when she interviewed him on E! two years ago ... Michael Jackson is charging Japanese fans $3,500 a pop to shake his hand and snap a photo. The "Premium VIP Party" takes place March 8.
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