Who knew recording a video of yourself in a Chewbacca mask could be this profitable?

Candace Payne, the Texas woman responsible for that legendary Facebook Live video, has reportedly earned over $400,000 since the video was posted.

That’s according to Money, which estimates that Payne’s earnings from gifts, talk show appearances and more has made her about US$420,000 to date. And remember — this is all since May 19.

Her haul includes $3,000 worth of gifts from Kohl’s, the US department store where she bought the mask, including dozens of toys, $2,500 in gift cards, and more Chewbacca masks for her whole family.

Money estimates that if you add up the cost of Candace’s flights, hotels, and VIP tours, she’s gotten $7,500 worth of value out of her talk show visits and her trips to Lucasfilm Studios and Facebook headquarters.


A free vacation to Walt Disney World for Candace’s family, including a meet-and-greet with Chewbacca, is estimated to have been worth another $7,500.

She also made an appearance at Fan Expo Dallas (alongside Chewbacca actor Peter Mayhew), reportedly worth $2,000.

But here’s where it gets really crazy — Southeastern University, “a Christ-centred institution of higher learning” in Florida, gave full college scholarships to Candace and her family, a prize Money values at $400,000.

“Candace has inspired us and others with her joy, and we want her and her family to experience some of that same joy through this gift,” Dr Kent Ingle, president of the college, said.

The lesson here?

Next time you’re thinking of posting a silly video to social media, just go ahead and do it — even if you probably won’t be able to capture the public’s imagination the way that Candace has.