Win points for getting engaged, lose points for going to rehab: The new Fantasy Celebrity League for A-list obsessed fans
22:08 GMT, 16 July 2012
Described as a fantasy game for those who enjoy E! more than ESPN, Fantasy Celebrity League is an interactive, virtual competition where people draft and bet on a pseudo team of A-list stars rather than athletes, taking society's Hollywood obsession to another level.
From football, to baseball, and even cricket, fantasy sports leagues, a favourite pastime for husbands, has had a strong online presence for years, drawing more than 33 million fans each season.
Now, a handful websites are allowing celebrity watchers to draft 'teams' of A-list stars, where points are gained or lost depending on where they appear in the pages of Us Weekly, InTouch and People
A-list team: Described as a fantasy game for those who enjoy E! more than ESPN, Fantasy Celebrity League is a virtual competition for the Hollywood obsessed
Scoring goes something like this: Celebrity goes to rehab, minus ten points; celebrity gets arrested, minus five points; pregnancy announcement, plus 3 points.
And if one of the celebrities on your 'team' scores a tabloid cover, that's an automatic ten point gain.
Websites that allow leagues to 'draft' Hollywood stars for Celebrity Fantasy League include The Lifestyles
of the Vain and Narcissistic, Pop Stars and Posers and Snookipocolypse.
Each website facilitates live draft parties, and leagues can choose whether they want to play for cash, or other winnings.
Angelle Smith, a 31-year-old attorney
Washington, D.C., drafted her own A-list team in a friend's Celebrity
Wonkettes league. However the league soon morphed into the Celebrity
Wonks & Wonkettes when they coaxed a few guys to join.
Their site of choice is Celebrity Fantasy Draft, which offers a database of 2,500 celebs to
choose from and emails out weekly point counts based on the
number and placement of photos in the three weekly tabloid magazines over a
Celebrity drafting: Members of the Wonks & Wonkettes league gather during a celebrity draft in Washington, D.C.
Denise Riley, a
Denver attorney behind the site said: 'It's mind candy. You have so much stress in
your daily life. It's just something to get your mind off of everything
else that you have to do.'
Lisa Lovett, 31, and college career services worker in Denver also has a league on Ms Roley's site.
Her team, consisting of Beyonce,
Jay-Z, Justin Bieber, Prince Harry and Suri Cruise, is currently running
fourth in her leaugue, but the season isn't over until the end of July.
Each team owner in Ms Lovett's league puts in $10; the winner takes all, or about $90 once the $20 fee to the Celebrity Fantasy Draft site is paid.
In the Wonks and Wonkettes league,
which uses the same site, Ms Smith's team includes Bieber, Jason Segel,
Kim Kardashian ex-husband Kris Humphries and Mason Disick, the first
child of Kourtney Kardashian.
'The knowledge people display is
amazing, Ms Smith said of her fellow team owners in her league. 'People do their
homework. No one wants to be last.'
Winning sash: A winner from Celebrity Wonks & Wonkettes shares her prize; some leagues play for cash while others play for the fun of the game
Ms Riley says strategy is equal parts radar, research and luck.
'Whenever The Bachelor is on, if you can figure out who might be the pick, you're golden,' she said. The same goes for The Bachelorette.
Reality TV's Teen Moms, Housewives and American Idols contestants are usually everywhere, along with the entire Kardashian family.
Academy Awards season is awash in nominees, who are always a good bet, and movie promotional tours and premieres are key – Robert Pattinson and Kristen Stewart are popular choices when they are on the Twilight publicity circuit.
If you are interested in joining a Fantasy Celebrity League using Ms Riley's cite, she says that the draft, the big event at the beginning of each two month season where league members pick and choose celebrities for their own team, is one of the best parts of the game.
She advises, for now, to set up a league and invite friends, or hope that one of them organises a league.