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What’s in this year’s Oscar swag bag?

A Tanzanian adventure for two is one gift

A Tanzanian adventure for two is one gift in this year's Oscar bag of freebies for the acting and directing nominees. Credit: Distinctive Assets

A win may not be in the bag for everyone at Sunday’s Academy Awards, but there are plenty of goodies in the swag bag for this year’s acting and directing nominees.

The bag, which is valued at roughly $100,000, features an array of items ranging from My Magic Mud toothpaste (made with activated coconut shell charcoal and bentonite clay) to a 12-night Tanzania adventure for two (including hot air balloon safari with champagne breakfast).

“We aren’t concerned with the price tag. We simply want to compile a gift bag where busy celebrities can find new beauty products, off-the-beaten-path trips and even items to share with their children and pets,” says Lash Fary, founder of Los Angeles marketing firm Distinctive Assets, which creates the bags.

But do people earning eight- and nine-figure annual salaries really merit all those freebies? “While these nominees certainly do not ‘need’ free stuff, we aren’t gifting them out of a sense of philanthropy,” says Fary. “They are swag beneficiaries for the same reason their names earn them millions of dollars per film. Plus, they aren’t exactly getting it for free because the companies are using their valuable names for promotional value and also hoping they will gain a brand ambassador.”

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