'Forbes' Counts the Wealth of Fictional Characters

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Forbes magazine has calculated what it says would be the wealth of fictional characters if they were real. Near the top of the list is the Simpsons' character C. Montgomery Burns at an estimated $17 billion. Just ahead of Burns, at No. 1 on the list, is Oliver "Daddy" Warbucks from Annie.

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STEVE INSKEEP, host:

And today's last word in business goes to those who've made a coveted annual list: the 15 richest fictional characters.

(Soundbite from “The Simpsons”)

Mr. HARRY SHEARER (Actor): (as unknown character): Mr. Burns, in light of your unbelievable contempt for human life, this court fines you $3 million.

Mr. SHEARER (as Mr. Burns): Smithers, my wallet's in my right front pocket…

INSKEEP: That, of course, is Homer Simpson's boss, C. Montgomery Burns. Forbes Magazine estimates that he has amassed a fictional fortune of nearly $17 billion. Apparently he didn't get credit for once possessing a trillion-dollar bill. The magazine does claim though that it has a real method to figure out fictional net worth.

RENEE MONTAGNE, host:

Turns out, Montgomery Burns is only number two on this year's list. Number one is defense contractor Oliver Daddy Warbucks from “Annie.” Others on the list include oilman Jed Clampett, Thurston Howell III, Bruce Wayne, and the prince from Nigeria who keeps spamming you with e-mail asking for your help in bank numbers.

Forbes says it dropped last year's fictional number one from the list because so many people complained that the infinitely rich, Santa Claus, is actually real.

This is MORNING EDITION from NPR News. I'm Renee Montagne.

INSKEEP: And I'm Steve Inskeep.

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