Paul Feldman sold bagels on the honor system: Each day, he'd leave a box of bagels at an office with a sign with the price of the bagels, and then come back later and collect the money and the leftovers, all the while keeping painstakingly thorough data on the payment rates for each building. Using that data, Freakonomics authors Steven Levitt and Stephen Dubner later came to some unexpected conclusions. Now, with a movie coming out based on the book, those same two guys are applying their nerdy love of data-harvesting to the sneak preview of that movie tonight -- and you, depending on the extent of your amorality, will either be or not be the beneficiary.
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"They wanted to use this screening because it kind of mirrors the bagel experiment," explains Lisa Weiner, a PR rep for Magnolia Pictures and Green Film Company, the production companies. "They love their data."
The trick is to make you part of the data. By clicking this link (and only by clicking that link -- tickets won't be available at the theater), you can elect to pay whatever you think is fair to see a sneak preview of the movie, which doesn't officially open until October 1 -- anywhere from one cent to $100. "We haven't gotten many people paying $100, if you can believe it," quips Weiner.
Of the 10 cities the movie is previewing in, seven screenings are already sold out -- and Denver's getting there. So get up on it quick -- just remember: Don't gyp the bagel guy.