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Those Coveted Oscars Gift Bags Actually Cost Celebs Thousands of Dollars in Taxes.

Those Coveted Oscars Gift Bags Actually Cost Celebs Thousands of Dollars in Taxes.

The swag given out at this year’s Oscars could end up costing recipients quite a hefty sum.

This year’s “Everyone Wins” bag isn’t all that much of a gift, according to Forbes. That’s because the Hollywood stars the bags are given to could be on the hook for a tax hit of more than $60,000.

Yes, you read that right. This year’s “gift” bag has a value of $126,000, which is considered taxable income, according to the financial publication. The IRS’s 37 percent tax rate means that anyone who takes the bag owes the agency at least $46,620. It’s even worse if you’re a star who lives in California. Then you also have to pay an additional $16,758, thanks to the 13.3 percent state tax rate; recipients residing in the Golden State can expect to add $63,378 to next year’s tax bill. That’s not nothing, even if you’re a movie star.

Of course, the bag, which is put together by Distinctive Arts and given away to nominees in the Best Director and four Best Actor categories, has some choice gifts in it this year. The headline item is a three-day stay at the Lifestyle, a remote estate located outside of Ottawa, Canada (valued at $40,000). There’s also an arm liposuction procedure ($12,000), a three-night stay at the restored Faro Punta Impatore lighthouse just off the coast of Naples, Italy, ($9,000) and a bottle of Shinery Radiance Wash hand soap ($28). This year’s assortment may be worth 10 percent less than 2022’s—and about half the value of 2020’s record-setting offering—but there’s still plenty to enjoy.

By now, you might be wondering: Why isn’t the gift bag considered a gift? It would be if it were given to the star by a family member or friend, but not by Distinctive Assets, which is paid to put together the bags, Forbes notes. The IRS website even states that gift bags are taxable income. Each pouch also comes with an IRS Form 1099 to remind the stars they have to report their gifts. Of course, they only have to report and pay taxes for the gifts they actually use and not those they turn down.

This isn’t a new development, either. Hollywood and the IRS have been fighting over gift bags for years now. It’s the reason why the “Everyone Wins” bag, despite being closely associated with the Oscars, is not officially tied to the event or its organizer, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. In fact, the Oscars had to sue the company for promoting the bags as official swag.

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