A comedy show in the UK has just pulled off a rather well executed prank. It all got started earlier this week when Dan Richards, the "CEO" of a fake company called FameDaddy, appeared on a major morning television show. Richards, who is an actor in real life, spoke on live TV about his company, what he described as the world's "first celebrity sperm donor service." But after the airing, it quickly became clear that ITV wasn't alone in being duped; the story was subsequently picked up by the Telegraph and numerous media publications around the globe.
Eventually ITV and the Telegraph got the memo; it was all a prank, part of a satirical comedy program that is being produced by 2LE Media for Channel 4.
To their credit, the comedy troupe went to quite an extent to pull it off. In addition to having one of their actors appear on ITV's This Morning, they faked company records, set up a website, created a video, and provided a "company representative" to assure Telegraph journalists that the company was legit.
The story was subsequently picked up by media outlets in the US, Australia, China, and Canada.
As for FameDaddy, the whole thing is actually quite funny. From their "official" website:
Most girls fantasise about dating their favourite boyband star, or having a fling with a Hollywood actor. Some will even wonder what a child from that union would be like, both its physical characteristics and potential for success. Fame Daddy is the only premium insemination service to now offer this unprecedented level of intimate VIP access.
Donor profiling is not new to the private fertility industry. Matches can be found according to preferences on race, eye colour, hair colour, religion, skin tone, nationality and education. Now, Fame Daddy goes one step further.
This soon-to-launch service will boast a top-flight client list of celebrity donors from the worlds of sport, entertainment and finance – all leaders in their fields, with a proven track record of success.
And when speaking to the Telegraph, Richards told them, "Whether it is talent on the stage or pitch, having a world-beating voice, or just being very beautiful, Fame Daddy will have the perfect celebrity surrogate daddy."
Commence the slow clap.