The Big Deal

Can any self-centered hack get an endorsement contract? Joel Stein speed-dials his agent to see if he can leverage his condition into megabucks

I HAD FOOLISHLY ASSUMED that I couldn't exploit my fame, namely because I didn't have any. Then I found out that Clive Owen got $4.6 million to be the face of Lancóme's men's skin-care line. The only thing I know about Clive Owen is that he didn't get picked to be James Bond. I didn't get picked to be James Bond either. That had to be worth something. Even more surprising, Diane Keaton, who is 60, scored a major deal to be a spokeswoman for L'Oréal Paris, even though she's 60. I had to get out there and brand myself quickly...

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