Vince Offer – a ShamWow-tastic litigator

by Ted Frank on February 7, 2009

The new king of the infomercial is Vince Offer, whose abrasive ads for, well, $20 rags and overpriced plastic kitchen gadgets have made him millions and won him an extensive YouTube following.

But Offer thinks he’s an actor/writer/director, though has demonstrated little talent for it; his Underground Comedy Movie, starring such lights as Joey Buttafuoco and Angelyne, got risible reviews.

Of note for this page is that he has had even less success as a litigant. In 1998, Offer brought suit against the Farrelly brothers, implausibly claiming that their hit There’s Something About Mary was plagiarized from his movie. (The Farrelly brothers weren’t impressed: “We’ve never heard of him, we’ve never heard of his movie, and it’s all a bunch of bologna.”) Unfortunately, by bringing the suit under federal copyright law, Offer exposed himself to one of the few two-way fee-shifting statutes out there, and a federal judge had little trouble (literally) rubber-stamping a motion for summary judgment and an order requiring Offer to pay over $66 thousand in attorneys’ fees. (Offer v. Farrelly, Case No. CV 98-7697 RAP(RCx) (C.D. Cal. Jan. 13, 2000); id. (Mar. 14, 2000)).

Offer’s also brought suit against Anna Nicole Smith, and issued a press release threatening to sue The Church of Scientology, but I’m not inclined to spend $4.75 to learn about those cases.

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Vince Offer Arrested « thanks for participating
03.27.09 at 10:24 pm

{ 2 comments }

1 Jay 02.07.09 at 11:57 am

I read through the Slate article, and this little snippet from prnewswire (linked on Slate) is amusing:Offer is using his proceeds from the sales of the movie to fight the
Church in court. Armed with evidence and the passion of obtaining redress for
injustice, he has pursued an unrelenting quest to expose the human cruelty and
destructive practices committed, still to this day, by the Church of
Scientology’s leadership helmed by David Miscavage.
Nice to know he’s also a tireless crusader for the little guy, in addition to shill for shop towels.

2 Randy Wilson 02.08.09 at 11:00 am

I’ve been meaning to blog about the LA Superior website’s money grubbing ways. I don’t understand how they can get away with charging money for public information, particularly as much money as they charge. Most other counties aren’t doing this!

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