Anonymous Fan Pays Over $5,000 to ‘Catch a Cold’ From Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett Johansson has some serious star power. Not only is she talented, smart, and beautiful, she has an undeniable box office draw that has her starring in one film after another with no signs of slowing down.

She’s even getting her own Black Widow movie spinoff, a film Marvel fans think is long overdue.

It was during promotional interviews for a very different comic book film, however, that Johansson showed just how much her star power could earn her for how very little.

Did Scarlett Johansson really sell a used tissue?

Scarlett Johansson at an award show
Scarlett Johansson | Max Mumby/Indigo/Getty Images

In 2008 Johansson was interviewing with Jay Leno and she was a bit under the weather. She had a cold which she joked she caught from fellow actor Samuel L. Jackson. The two had been in Frank Miller’s The Spirit together and were making the promotional talk show rounds. This was years before they would be together again playing comic book characters in the Avengers films.

Over the course of the interview, Johansson blew her nose into a tissue twice, then she bagged it up and signed the bag. When the tissue was posted for sale on eBay, media outlets blew up the story, garnering the auction even more views and bids.

The tissue got over 60 bids in just a few days and ultimately sold for $5,300, the proceeds of which went to the charity of Johansson’s choice, USA Harvest.

It’s not uncommon for celebrity items to sell for high prices

Of course, Johansson’s tissue isn’t the only celebrity item to pull in a high purchase price, though usually, the items for sale will have more cultural significance than a used tissue.

One of the pairs of Dorothy’s ruby red slippers from the Wizard of Oz, for example, sold for $6 million, while Audrey Hepburn’s personal script from Breakfast at Tiffany’s sold for $811,615.

Olivia Newton-John’s leather pants from her time dueting “You’re the One That I Want” with John Travolta in the musical Grease brought in $162,000. The purchaser of these sexy skin-tight pants of musical movie history? The founder of Spanx,┬áSara Blakely. How appropriate.

The list could go on and on when it comes to the sale of film memorabilia but are there other odd items without any historical significance that have pulled in high prices like Johansson’s tissue? The answer is yes, and they often at least benefit charity when sold by the right people.

Justin Bieber’s hair, Lady Gaga’s fake fingernail, and Niall Horan’s toast

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In 2013 during a concert, a crew member discovered what they thought was a guitar pick backstage, but turned out to be a missing acrylic fingernail from the hand of Lady Gaga herself. That lucky crew member sold the nail on auction for a cool $12,000.

A little part of Justin Bieber is in the hands of a fan somewhere at this moment as well. During an interview with Ellen, Bieber gave her a lock of his hair and she subsequently auctioned it off for $40,688. The proceeds of that sale went to the animal rights organization, Gentle Barn Foundation.

Niall Horan, of boy band One Direction, once tried a bit of Vegemite toast on the Australian morning show, Sunrise. After the show, the piece of partially eaten toast was auctioned off for nearly $100,000. The proceeds went to the Australian charity Youngcare.

When it comes to an item as gross as a tissue to rival Johansson’s, we must differ to the Princess of Pop herself, Britney Spears. Apparently for a time, it was a thing to “procure” her spat out chewing gum and sell it online. Gross. One such wad of gum reportedly sold for $14,000 after the seller bid against himself to inflate the final purchase price.